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285 B521J 

An Introduction to the Episcopal 
Church 






.1 

8 1981 



AN INTRODUCTION TO 
THE EPISCOPAL CHURCH 



BY 

JOSEPH BUCHANAN BERNARDIN 



MOREHOUSE-BARLOW COMPANY 

NEW YORK 



COPYIIGHT 1935, 1940, 1957 BY 
MOREHOUSE-BARLOW CO. 



THIRB EDITION' 
Nin& Printing, January, 1965 



PtIHTED IK U.S.A. 



PREFACE 

MULTITUDES of subconsciously-remembered 
ideas from friends and speakers and books go 
into the making and phrasing of any writing intended 
to cover a vast subject for popular use. To all of them. 
an author would, If he were able, give grateful thanks 
for the help which they have been to him in his think 
ing. But only their ideas and not their names remain. 
He can, however, acknowledge the gracious kindness 
of those who have read his manuscript and enabled 
him, by their suggestions, to avoid some of the pitfalls 
inevitably attendant upon generalization, and to in 
dicate matters which he had neglected to treat. The 
Rev. Frederic M. Adams, the Rev. Dr. Edward R. 
Hardy, Jr., tie Rev. Otis R. Rice, the Rev. Dr. How 
ard C. Robbins, William L. Savage, Esq., and the Rev, 
George A. Trowbridge have done this friendly service, 
and I am grateful for their generously-given help. 

J. B. BERNARDIN 

NEW YORK. Cmr, 

All Saints* Day, AJX 1935, 



KANSAS CITY (MO.) PUBLIC LIBRARY 



CONTENTS 



PAGE 

Preface . v 



CHAPTER. 



I. The Church's History I 

II. The Church's Government .... 13 

HI. The Church's Bible 19 

IV. The Church's Prayer Book .... 27 
V. The Church's Ritual .36 

VI. The Church's Doctrine 48 

VII. The Church's Moral Law .... 63 
VIIL The Church's Prayer Life .... 74 

IX. The Church's Sacraments 83 

X. The Church's Requirements .... 94 
Appendices 101 

A. Preparation for Confirmation . . 103 

B. An Aid to Self-examination . .110 

C. Prayers 112 

D. A Partial List of Christian Religious 
Classics 116 



AN INTRODUCTION TO 
THE EPISCOPAL CHURCH 



CHAPTER I 

THE CHURCH'S HISTORY 

IN THE course of History there have been many and 
various forms of religion, some of which no longer 
exist and a large part of which never ^pbtained more 
than local or temporary importance. ^oday there are 
eleven giving world religions, among which is Chris 
tianity. ^Much of its teaching and isolated beliefs may 
be found in these other religions, but in one thing it is 
unique it alone among all the revealed religions claims 
that God Himself made the revelation of Himself in 
the Person of His Son Jesus Christ, and thereby 
showed men what God was like and what God wanted 
men to be like; and that He imparts to them today 
the strength necessary to fulfil this purpose, if they 
seek it according to His will. The other religions claim 
that the divine revelation came through a prophet, as 
in. Mohammedanism, or else through some lesser god, 
as in the ancient Hermetic cults, but never through the 
Supreme God Himself. 

Jesus Christ, in order to perpetuate the revelation 
which God had made in Him, gathered about Him 
self a group of disciples from whom He chose an inner 
circle which were known as the Twelve, and later as 
the Apostles. At the time of His death on the cross 
they all deserted Him, but after His resurrection He in 
spired them with new hope and they went forth to 

1 



2 THE CHURCH S HISTORY 

carry to the world the Gospel, die good news about 
the salvation to be obtained through faith in Him. 

For the first hundred years or so of Christian his 
tory the early disciples expected the imminent return 
of Christ from heaven in glory to judge the world. 
Consequently, they made no provision for the future or 
the carrying on of their message beyond their own 
generation. The early development of the Church came 
as a result of its adjustment to the fact of the de 
layed return of Christ, 

Hie first Jerusalem disciples continued to worship 
in the Temple, forming a synagogue of the Nazarene, 
which differed from the other synagogues only in their 
belief that Jesus Christ was the Messiah predicted by 
the Scriptures, and that He was about to return to 
judge the world and to set up His Kingdom. After the 
pej^cution and death of St. Stephen, the first Chris 
tian martyr, the cleavage between Judaism and the fol 
lowers of Jesus Christ became apparent, and they were 
scattered to other cities. Small groups of Christians be 
came organized in various places into assemblies or 
churches, meeting in private houses. They were some 
times founded by the informal methods of traders, 
friends, or neighbors; sometimes by the direct preach 
ing of traveling disciples. 

The earliest churches were ruled by the apostles 
themselves. But as they were not always present, a 
share in the government fell to the older men in the 
assembly, just as it did in the Jewish synagogues. The 
word for elder in Greek is one which has been angli 
cized as **presbyter," and in course of time shortened to 
priest. From this council of older men sprang the second 
order of the Christian ministry, the priesthood. As 



THE CHURCH S HISTORY 3 

time went on the need of someone to take the place 
of the apostles and to oversee the other elders was f eit, 
and one among their number was chosen for this office 
of overseer. From the Greek word meaning overseer 
came efiscofus in Latin, which in the course of time 
became anglicized as "'bishop." The early Christians 
were mostly from the lower" orders of society and of 
small means, and they not only suffered financially in 
many cases for their new beliefs, but also took little 
thought for the future on account of their expectation 
that the end of the world was near. Hence the problem 
of poor relief was a pressing one. The apostles felt that 
they could not take the time from their preaching 
necessary to attend to such work, so a body of officials 
was appointed to take charge of this and to visit the 
sick. They were called by a word in Greek which means 
"waiter" and from which we get the English "deacon." 
They were the origin of the first order of the Christian 
ministry. 

St. Paul was the one chiefly instrumental in the 
process by which Christianity grew from a purely Jew 
ish and Asiatic religion to be a Gentile and European 
one as well. Quietly but doggedly Christianity grew 
and spread throughout the Roman Empire in spite of 
the fact that it was an illegal religion, despised by 
the ruling classes, and often persecuted by the State. 

The last and severest persecution of Christianity 
under the Emperor Diocletian was followed by the 
Edict of Toleration issued by the Emperor Constantine 
in 311. From that time on increasing privileges were 
granted to Christianity until finally it became the of 
ficial religion of the Empire. Church buildings began 
to be erected and the Church grew rapidly in numbers 



4 THE CHURCH S HISTORY 

and under Constantine, In 325 at Nicsea lie as- 

the first general council of the whole Church 

to on disputed points of doctrine and discipline, 

from on general councils have been held at 
intervals. In the year 1054 the Church in the East 

the Church in the West which had been increas- 
estranged from one another, particularly since 
867, formally separated and have remained so ever 
since. 

Long before this time Christianity had come to 
Britain. Unauthenticated tradition attributes it to St. 
Joseph of Arimathxa who is supposed to have come to 
Glastonbury with the Holy Grail. In all probability it 
was due to converted Gallic merchants and Roman 
soldiers. St. Alban, the first Christian martyr in Brit 
ain, suffered death there in the third century, and 
about the year AJX 300 bishoprics are known to have 
existed at London, York, and Lincoln. But when the 
Roman legions were withdrawn in 401, the Christians 
were soon driven by the invading barbarians to the 
west of England and Wales, and even over into Ireland. 
In the next century the attempt to reconvert England 
was begun by two distinct missions. One came over 
from Ireland to lona under St. Columba and worked 
down from the north; the other was the famous mission 
sent by Pope Gregory the Great under St. Augustine, 
which established itself at Canterbury in the year 597, 
and worked up from the south. As a consequence of 
this the Archbishop of Canterbury became the leading 
bishop of the Church of England. It took another cen 
tury and the devoted labors of numerous saints be 
fore England was once again, at least nominally, 
Christian. 



THE CHURCH'S HISTORY 5 

The English bishops, in the course of time, came 
more and more under the authority of the Pope, as did 
the English king John, in 1215, and his successor 
Henry III. But as the popes began to abuse theit 
authority and to exact heavy financial payments, a 
revolt gradually began to set in after the Black Death 
in 1349 with the passing of the Statutes of Provi^ors 
and Praonunire forbidding appointment to English 
bishoprics or benefices, or appeals to be made to courts 
outside the realm without the king's consent. 

Influenced in no small degree by the continental 
reformation of the Church initiated by Luther, in 
flamed by disgust at the moral corruption of the papacy 
and clergy, and brought to a head by an unworthy 
personal controversy of Henry VIII with the Pope 
over the question of divorce, the papal authority was 
more and more restricted in England by parliamentary 
acts until, in 1534, it was declared that the Bishop 
of Rome had no authority over the bishops of the 
Church of England. In spite of the momentous conse 
quences of this decision, the ordinary Christian was 
little affected at first by this decree, for he continued 
to worship in his same parish church and cathedral 
in the Latin tongue and to receive the sacraments from 
the hands of the same ministers as formerly. Henry 
VIH died no less orthodox and catholic than when 
the Pope conferred on him the tide, still claimed 
by the English kings, "Defender of the Faith." Before 
the final breach with Rome, Henry had obtained the 
appointment of Thomas Cranmer as Archbishop of 
Canterbury, and Cranmer took a leading part in the 
reformation of the Church of England. 

When Henry VIII died in 1547 he was succeeded by 



6 THE CHURCH S HISTORY 

his nme-year-old son Edward VI, who was controlled 
in by his uncle, the Duke of Somerset, as Protec 
tor, then by the Duke of Northumberland, Under 
them, in response to strong urging on the part of the 
who wished further to purify the Church of 
from what they considered unscriptural 
and unholy practices, the service books were 
translated into English, and drastic reforms were 
made in the conduct and practice of worship. 

Edward VI was succeeded in 1553 by his half-sister 
Mary, who restored the papal authority and the Latin 
service, and put to death some of the bishops who re 
fused to take the oath of obedience to the Pope, in 
cluding Archbishop Cranmer of Canterbury. In 1558 
die was succeeded by her half-sister, Elizabeth, who 
once more repudiated the authority of the Pope over 
the Church of England and issued a revised English 
Prayer Book in 1559. In 1570 Elizabeth was excom 
municated by the Pope. This marks the fotmal with 
drawal of the Church of Rome from communion with 
the Church of England, Although England repudiated 
the authority of the Bishop of Rome, she did not with 
draw from fellowship with the Church of Rome, but 
Rome from her. But centuries before this the Church 
of England had been established by law as the of 
ficial Church of the realm of England, and it was 
authorized to receive land taxes > known as tithes, for 
its support. 

During Elizabeth's reign the new country to the 
west was being opened up and explored. It was a chap 
lain on the iagship of Sir Francis Drake who, on the 
shores of Golden Gate Bay in San Francisco in the 
year 1579, held the first Prayer Book service in this 



THE CHURCH S HISTORY / 

country. Various parts o America were settled by 
different religious groups. Florida and Maryland were 
founded by the Roman Catholics, New England by the 
Puritans or Congregationalists, Rhode Island by the 
Baptists, New York by the Dutch, Pennsylvania by 
the Friends, and Virginia by members of the Church 
of England. 

There in 16G7 the Rev. Robert Hunt preached and 
administered the sacraments to the first settlers at 
Jamestown. The direct successor of that congregation 
still exists today as Bruton Parish, Williamsburg, Vir 
ginia. From there the Church of England spread into 
Maryland, and in these two states it became estab 
lished by law as in England, and received tithes for 
its support. 

In spite of much opposition the worship of the 
Church began to be held in Boston at King's Chapel 
in 1687. With the coming of the English governor to 
New York in 1664 Church of England services were 
held, after those in Dutch, in the old Church of St. 
Nicholas within the Fort. Trinity Parish was organized 
in 1697 and a year later moved into its own church 
building. In Philadelphia Christ Church was founded 
as early as 1695. 

By the time of the Revolutionary War there were 
congregations of the Church of England in all of the 
colonies, chiefly, however, in the larger towns along 
the seaboard. Many of these were assisted greatly by 
two missionary societies, then recently formed in Eng 
land by the Rev. Dr. Thomas Bray, which still exist 
today: the Society for Promoting Christian Knowl 
edge founded in 1699 and commonly known by its 



8 THE CHURCH'S HISTORY 

as the S. P. C. K., and the Society for the Propa- 
of the Gospel in Foreign Parts, founded in 1701 
and similarly known as the S.P. G. 

But throughout all these years not only was no 
bishop appointed for the colonies, in spite of many 
on their part, but none ever visited them. 
Nominally they were under the jurisdiction of the 
Bishop of London. In consequence, Confirmation was 
never administered, and anyone wishing to be or 
dained had to make the perilous voyage back to Eng- 
land^ which greatly hindered the development of a 
native ministry. 

When the Revolutionary War broke out, though 
there were priests like Dr. William White of Christ 
Church, Philadelphia, who became not only Chaplain 
of the Continental Army, but also of the Continental 
Congress, the majority of the clergy remained loyal to 
the King. Consequently, after the war was over, the 
Church suffered in prestige, in spite of the fact that 
the majority of the signers both of the Declaration of 
Independence and of the Constitution of the United 
States were its members. 

In the year 1783 the Church in Connecticut elected 
the Rev. Dr. Samuel Seabury as its bishop and sent 
him to England to be consecrated at the hands of the 
English bishops. This they refused to do because he 
could not take the oath of allegiance to the King, and 
they had no authority without parliamentary sanction 
to dispense with it. Tiring of the delay, he turned to 
the Scottish non-juror bishops, who had remained loyal 
to the House of Stuart and were consequently not 
recognized by the State nor bound by the laws of the 
Established Church, and was consecrated by them at 



THE CHURCH S HISTORY 9 

Aberdeen, Scotland, on November 14, 1784. In the 
years 1784-86 conventions of the various Churches 
were held to decide what course of action should be 
taken. In 1787 Dr. Samuel Provoost, Rector of Trinity 
Church, New York, and Dr. William White, Rector of 
Christ Church, Philadelphia, went to England and were 
consecrated bishops in Lambeth Palace Chapel by the 
Archbishops of Canterbury and York, the Bishop of 
Bath and Wells, and the Bishop of Peterborough, a 
law having been enacted to make this possible; and 
later, in 1790, Dr. James Madison was also consecrated 
in England as Bishop of Virginia. In the year 1789 at 
Philadelphia a General Convention was held at which 
a Constitution was adopted for the Church and the 
English Prayer Book revised for American needs. 

The Episcopal Church grew slowly in numbers. For 
most of the clergy were lazy, and as the tide of emi 
gration swept westward beyond the Alieghenies they 
refused to follow, and the vast field of the Central 
States and the Middle West was left to the Methodists 
and Baptists to evangelize. Finally, however, the Epis 
copal Church awoke to Its missionary responsibility, 
largely due to the efforts of Bishop Hobart in New 
York and Bishop Griswold in New England. Bishop 
Philander Chase was consecrated Bishop of Ohio in 
1819. The following year the Domestic and Foreign 
Missionary Society was incorporated, and in 1835 Gen-* 
eral Convention declared that every member of the 
Episcopal Church by virtue of his membership was 
also a member of the Missionary Society. In this same 
year Bishop Jackson Kemper was consecrated Bishop 
of the Northwest; and by the time of the Gold Rush 



10 THE CHURCH'S HISTORY 

the Episcopal Church was fully alive to Its responss 
bility and Bishop Kip was sent to California* 

The General Theological Seminary for the educatioi 
of men for the ministry of the Episcopal Church wa 
opened in New York City in 1819; and shortly after 
wards the Theological Seminary in Virginia was estab 
lished at Alexandria with special emphasis on prepar 
ing men for missionary work. 

The Episcopal Church weathered the Civil War with 
out any permanent division into North and Soutt 
such as was the fate of most of the larger denomina 
tions at that time. In the second half of the nineteenth 
century sisterhoods and monastic orders for men wen 
established in the Episcopal Church; as well as sec 
ondary, industrial, and mission schools, several col 
leges, and numerous hospitals. Mission fields were 
developed in the various territorial possessions and 
dependencies of the United States; and the Episcopal 
Church, by the end of the nineteenth century, had 
taken its rightful place in the forefront of the religious 
life of the country. With the increasing interest in the 
beauty of worship, church buildings and cathedrals 
expressive of the highest in art and architecture were 
built, and music of appropriate dignity and beauty 
maintained. 

In the interest of the efficient management and fur 
ther development of so vast an organization, the cen 
tral administration of the Episcopal Church was 
reorganized in 1919 under a National Council which 
carries on the functions of General Convention between 
its triennial meetings. Two years earlier the Episcopal 
Church, in order to provide adequate retiring allow 
ances for its clergy and pensions for their direct de- 



THE CHURCH'S HISTORY 11 

pendents in case of death, established Its Pension 
Fund, which has become a model for those of other 
denominations. 

In 1872 the Woman's Auxiliary to the Board of Mis 
sions was organized, which In 1920 broadened the scope 
of Its work to include other activities of the Church 
besides missions in Its program, and became the 
Woman's Auxiliary to the National Council. In 1889 
it started the United Thank Offering (a voluntary, 
monetary expression of gratitude for God's blessings on 
the part of the women, placed in a little blue box), 
which has become one of the chief supports of the 
Church's missionary and educational work. 

In recent years, the name of the National Council has 
been changed to Executive Council, and the Woman's 
Auxiliary has become the General Division of Women's 
work. The Forward Movement was inaugurated in 
1934 to stimulate the spiritual life of the Church. It con 
tinues to publish devotional booklets. 

The Episcopal Church, as well as the whole Anglican 
Communion, has been one of the leaders in the ecu 
menical movement for the restoration of the visible 
unity of the Church. Bishop Charles H. Brent in 1910 
initiated steps which resulted in the formation of the 
World Council of Churches in 1948 at Amsterdam, 
with all of the leading Churches of the Anglican Com 
munion as members. In addition, the Episcopal Church 
is also a member of the National Council of the 
Churches of Christ in the United States of America, 
which was constituted in 1950 out of thirteen interde 
nominational agencies. 

It Is important to remember that the Church is as 



12 THE CHURCH'S HISTORY 

new as It Is old; that It was founded by our Lord 
Himself, and in the course of its history has seen many 
forms of government and used many languages in its 
worship; but that, while outwardly adapting itself 
efficiently to the circumstances of the time, within there 
is enshrined the tradition which it received from the 
apostles of the revelation of God in the Person of 
Jesus Christ, as illuminated for every age by the Holy 
Spirit. 



BOOKS FOR FURTHER READING 

ABMSON, J. T., The Episcopal Church in the United States, 

1789-1931. Charles Scribner's Sons, New York. 
BEVAN, E. R., Christianity. Oxford University Press, New York. 
DAWLEY, P. M., Chapters in Church History. Seabury Press, 

New York. 

DIBELIUS, M. y Jesus. Westminster Press, Philadelphia. 
GOGCIEL, M-3 The Life of Jesus. Macmillan Co., New York. 
HUME, R. E., The World's Living Religions. Charles Scribner's 

Sons, New York. 
LATOUEETTE, K. S., A History of Christianity. Harper & Row, 

New York. 
MANROSS, W. W., A History of the American Episcopal Church , 

Morehouse-Barlow Co., New York. 
SWEET, W. W., The Story of Religion in America. Harper & 

Row, New York. 
TAYLOR, V., The Ufe and Ministry of Jesus. Abingdon Press, 

Nashville. 
WILLIAMSON, WILLIAM B., A Handboo\ for Episcopalians. 

Morehouse-Barlow Co., New York. 
WILSON, F. E,, The Divine Commission. Morehouse-Barlow 

Co., New York. 

WILSON, F. R, An Outline of the English Reformation. More 
house-Barlow Co., New York, 
WILSON, F. E., and HARDY, E. R., An Outline History of the 

Episcopal Church. Morehouse-Barlow Co., New York. 
WILSON, F. E n and MOREHOUSE, C. P., An Outline Life of 

Christ. Morehouse-Barlow Co., New York. 



CHAPTER II 

THE CHURCH'S GOVERNMENT 

Church which our Lord founded has four notes 
JL or characteristics, which are summed up in the 
credal phrase the "One, Holy, Catholic, and ApostoEc 
Church." The first of these is unity. Our Lord founded 
only one Church and meant His followers to be one 
in Him. He is not responsible for the various sects into 
which Christianity is now divided. The second note is 
holiness. Holy originally meant to be set apart for the 
Deity, to be sacred. The Church was intended to be set 
apart from evil unto righteousness. Its members were 
to live lives distinguished from those without the 
Church by their likeness to the life of their Lord. The 
Church and its members belong to God. The third is 
catholicity or universality. Our Lord intended His 
Church to be for people of every kindred and clime, 
of every degree of wealth, social position, and educa 
tion. It was not to be a local Jewish Palestinian club, 
but an organization to embrace the whole of the hu 
man family. The fourth of these is apostolicity. The 
Church was to be founded with the inner circle of his 
followers, the Apostles, as its first members and lead 
ers, and it was they who were to proclaim His message 
to men after His death. 

In the course of time the Church has unfortunately 
been divided into a large number of communions, 

B 



14 THE CHURCH'S GOVERNMENT 

which can be divided roughly into two groups, popu 
larly "Catholic" and "Protestant." The Catholic 
group includes the Church of Rome, the Old Catholics, 
die Greek Orthodox Church, and various national 
Churches In the East. The Protestant group includes, 
first of all, the Lutheran Church which owes its origin 
to Martin Luther, and various Reformed Churches 
which owe their origin to John Calvin, among which 
are the Huguenots, the Dutch Reformed, and tie Pres 
byterian Churches. In later times the Baptist, Congre 
gational, Methodist and other Protestant Churches 
arose. However, the Church of England, of which the 
Protestant Episcopal Church In the United States is 
the daughter, is both Catholic and Protestant. 

The essential features of a Catholic Church are, 
first, that it should have a three-fold ministry of bish 
ops, priests, and deacons ordained by bishops who 
stand in line of succession from the apostles, generally 
called the apostolic succession or historic episcopate; 
secondly, that it should have the Catholic creeds, the 
so-called Apostles' and Nicene; thirdly, that It should 
have the Bible; and fourthly, the sacraments ordained 
by our Lord. 

The chief characteristics of a Protestant Church are, 
first of all, that from which the name comes its pro 
test, or witness to, or setting forth of the fundamental 
truths of the Gospel, and its protest against the unique 
authority of the Pope or Bishop of Rome over other 
bishops and clergy, his right to rule all Christians, and 
to arrogate to himself the power which has become 
his in the course of time; secondly, the use of the ver 
nacular tongue in its worship; thirdly, the simplicity of 
its ceremonial; and fourthly, the freedom of the con- 



THE CHURCH S GOVERNMENT 



15 



science of individual Christians in the matter of re 
ligious practice, although this last has been more an 
ideal than a fact. 

As can be seen, the Episcopal Church fulfils the con 
ditions of both. It is a Church which strives to main 
tain in essentials unity; in non-essentials liberty; and 
in all things charity. The legal title is a cumbrous but 
significant one: THE PROTESTANT EPISCOPAL CHURCH 
IN THE UNTIED STATES OF AMERICA. "It Is a Protestant 
Church in that it both bears witness to the Gospel of 
God and protests against the Pope's claim to au 
thority over other bishops. It is Episcopal in that it 
is governed by bishops; and it Is confined (with a few 
exceptions) to the United States of America and its 
possessions. 

An Episcopal Church is governed by bishops; a 
Presbyterian Church by presbyters or elders; and a 
Congregational Church by the congregation. The Epis 
copal Church, although governed by bishops, is also 
democratically ruled, for its final authority rests in the 
General Convention, which meets every three years. 
It consists of a House of Bishops and a House of 
Deputies. Each diocese of the Church is entitled to 
send four clerical and four lay delegates. Similarly, 
each diocese is governed by a diocesan convention 
which meets annually, and to which every parish is 
entitled to send a certain number of lay delegates, in 
addition to its clergy. 

As the Constitution of the Episcopal Church was 
drawn up in 1789 by many of the same men who helped 
to write the Constitution of the United States, there are 
many parallels between the two forms of government. 
General Convention is similar to the Congress; con- 



16 THE CHURCH'S GOVERNMENT 

sisting of two houses, the House of Bishops correspond- 
ing to the Senate, and the House of Deputies to the 
House of Representatives. The dioceses correspond to 
the states, the diocesan conventions to the state legis 
latures, and the bishops to the governors. The Presid 
ing Bishop corresponds to the President o the United 
States, and the Executive Council to the Cabinet. All the 
members of the Church share directly or indirectly 
in its government through their election of representa 
tives. The vestries in parishes are elected by the laity, 
and they in turn elect the delegates to the diocesan con 
ventions, which in turn elect the deputies to the Gen 
eral Convention. Rectors are chosen either by the vote 
of the vestry or of the congregation itself, and bishops 
(except missionary bishops) by diocesan conventions. 
The Church is divided, first of all, into parishes pre 
sided over by rectors. They may have one or more or 
dained assistants (sometimes called curates), and also 
lay assistants, such as parish visitors, etc., as well as 
deaconesses (women set apart for educational and 
charitable work in the Church). Sometimes within a 
parish there may be dependent congregations known 
as chapels and presided over by vicars. Parishes are 
grouped together into dioceses presided over by 
bishops; dioceses into provinces presided over by arch 
bishops; these in turn are joined together into partri- 
archates presided over by patriarchs. In the Episcopal 
Church there are no archbishops at the head of prov 
inces and no patriarchates; but instead there is an 
elected administrative head of the Church, known as 
the Presiding Bishop, who is also President of the Exec 
utive Council, a body formed to supervise and stimulate 
the work of the Church. The Executive Council has a 



THE CHURCH'S GOVERNMENT 17 

vice-president, treasurer, and secretary ? and Is divided 
into six departments: Overseas, Home, Christian Edu 
cation, Christian Social Relations, Promotion, and Fi 
nance. 

There is also a General Division of Women's Work, 
representing the whole womanhood of the Church, 
wherein every woman may assist in the full program 
of the Church's work in each of Its five fields of 
service: the parish, the community, the diocese, the 
nation, and the world. 

Some dioceses are subdivided into archdeaconries 
for missionary purposes, and these are in charge of 
archdeacons. Others are divided, or further subdivided, 
into rural deaneries or convocations in charge of a rural 
dean. In the Church a dean Is the head of a cathedral, 
the principal church in a diocese located in the see city, 
in which the bishop has his throne or seat. The tide 
"dean" is also given to the heads of theological semi 
naries. 

Parochial clergy, whether deacons or priests, are ad 
dressed in writing as "The Reverend John Doe"; arch 
deacons as "The Venerable John Doe"; deans of cathe 
drals as "The Very Reverend John Doe"; bishops as 
"The Right Reverend John Doe"; and archbishops as 
"The Most Reverend John Doe." In conversation pa 
rochial clergy are called Mr. Doe, Father Doe, or 
Dr. Doe, depending on their preference and whether 
or not they possess a doctor's degree from some insti 
tution of learning. Archdeacons, deans, bishops, and 
archbishops are usually referred to in this country by 
those titles and their own names, as "Dean Doe," but 
in other countries by the title of their office, as "the 
Dean of X." Lay members of male religious commu- 



18 THE CHURCH'S GOVERNMENT 

nities are addressed as "Brother X" and ordained mem 
bers as "Father Doe.*' Members of female religious 
communities are addressed as "Sister X 3> and their 
heads generally as "Mother X." 

Hie Episcopal Church is an independent part of a 
larger whole known as the Anglican Communion, 
which embraces all the Churches, most of them the off 
spring of the Church of England, which are in com 
munion and fellowship with the See of Canterbury. It 
includes, besides the Protestant Episcopal Church in the 
United States of America, the Church of England, the 
Church in Wales, the Episcopal Church in Scotland, the 
Church of Ireland, the Anglican Church of Canada, the 
Church of the Province of the West Indies, the Church 
of India, Pakistan, Burma, and Ceylon, the Church of 
England in Australia and Tasmania, the Church of the 
Province of New Zealand, the Church of the Province 
of Central Africa, the Church of the Province of South 
Africa, the Church of the Province of West Africa, the 
Holy Catholic Church in Japan, the Holy Catholic 
Church in China, and a number of other provinces and 
dioceses scattered throughout the world. Approximately 
every ten years the bishops of these Churches consult 
together in London at the Lambeth Conference. And 
it is to this huge body, with a common tradition dif 
ferently adapted to local needs, that a member of the 
remotest or smallest mission station of the Episcopal 
Church in this country belongs, and of its larger strength 
partakes. 

BOOK FOR FURTHER READING 

DAWLEY, P. M^ The Episcopal Church and Its Wor\. Seabury 
Press, New York. 



CHAPTER III 

THE CHURCH'S BIBLE 

A LL religions of civilized peoples possess collections 
ZJL of sacred writings which they regard as an au 
thoritative revelation of the nature of their deity and 
of his will. In every case these writings were written 
by religiously-minded men to meet the needs and sit 
uation of their own day. Tradition soon endowed them 
with a divine origin and a sacrosanct authority. Con 
sequent^ in later times it became necessary either to 
revise or make interpolations in the text, or else to 
resort to an allegorical exegesis in order to fit them to 
the religious needs of succeeding generations. What is 
true of the sacred books of other religions,, is also true 
of the Bible, the sacred book of Christianity. 

The Bible means books. It is a collection of writings 
ranging in date from about the year 900 B.C. to A.D. 
150, written by men of religious insight for the needs 
of their own generation, and in many cases revised by 
others in succeeding years for their own times. The 
Bible is divided into two parts: the Old Testament, 
comprising 39 books, and the New Testament, contain 
ing 27; although a better translation of the Greek tides 
would be the Old Covenant and the New Covenant. 

The Old Testament contains a record of God's rela 
tion to men and men's relation to God under the cove- 
nant which He is supposed to have made with them 

19 



20 THE CHURCH'S BIBLE 

under Abraham: namely, that if they would be circum 
cised and keep His convenant He would be their God 
and give to them the land of Canaan for an everlasting 
possession. Similarly, the New Testament contains the 
record of God's relation to men and men's relation to 
God under the covenant which He made with them in 
Jesus Christ; namely, that those who believe on Him 
and are baptized into His Name and keep His com 
mandments will obtain everlasting salvation. 

The Old Testament was originally written in He 
brew, except for a few short passages in Aramaic. In 
the Hebrew Bible it is divided into three parts: the 
Law, comprising the first five books of the Bible, sup 
posed to have been written by Moses; the Prophets, 
divided into the Former Prophets (our historical 
books) and the Latter Prophets, comprising the three 
major prophets, Isaiah, Jeremiah, and Ezekiel, and 
the twelve minor prophets; and the Writings. The ear 
liest and the most sacred of these was the Law which 
in its present form dates from the time of Ezra about 
444 B.C. The prophetical canon, that is, the books 
forming the Prophets, was formed about 250 B.C., but 
the final decision as to just what books comprised the 
Writings was not made until a council held in Jamnia 
in Palestine toward the end of the first century AJX 

In the course of time Hebrew became a dead lan 
guage, and it was necessary to translate these writings 
into other languages in order that the people might 
understand them. The two principal translations were 
that into Aramaic for the people of Palestine, called 
the Targum, and that into Greek for those outside, 
called the Septuagint. The Greek Old Testament con 
tains In addition to the books found in the Hebrew 



THE CHURCH'S BIBLE 21 

Bible a number of others. It was this Greek Old Testa 
ment which was the sacred book of the early Christian 
Church and out of which they claimed to prove the 
birth, death, and resurrection of our Lord. 

At the time of the Continental Reformation Luther 
and the other reformers rejected the books of the Old 
Testament which were found only in Greek, and not in 
Hebrew, and which still form part of the Bible of the 
Church of Rome. The English Church, as often, took 
a middle position. Removing these books from their 
usual order, it placed them together in a group between 
the Old and the New Testament and labelled them the 
Apocrypha, declaring that they were to be read for 
example of life and instruction of manners, but not for 
the establishment of any doctrine. Parts of them are 
among the most beautiful and helpful passages in the 
whole Bible and well repay a careful reading. 

The earliest Christian writings, so far as we know, 
were testimonia, or collections of Old Testament texts 
supposedly predicting the events in our Lord's life, 
which were used in controversy with the Jews. Next 
come collections of our Lord's sayings. Both of these 
were made use of later when men began to draw up ac 
counts of the good news that salvation had come to the 
world through Jesus Christ the writings which we call 
Gospels. The earliest of these is the Gospel according 
to St. Mark, written by him in Greek about the year 
65 in Rome for the use of the Church there and, ac 
cording to an early tradition, based on the reminis 
cences of St. Peter. St. Mark aims chiefly to give an 
outline of the major events of our Lord's .ministry, to 
prove that He was the Son of God, and to show why, 
nevertheless, it was necessary for Him to be put to 



22 THE CHURCH'S BIBLE 

and to encourage Christians by His example to 
endure the sufferings to which they were subjected. 

Another Gospel was written for a Church in a pre 
dominately Jewish neighborhood, possibly Antioch, 
the year SO, based chiefly on the Gospel accord 
ing to St. Mark and a lost collection of sayings of our 
Lord which scholars call Q, with some additional ma 
terial of its own. This is known as the Gospel accord 
ing to St. Matthew, and was written to prove that Jesus 
was the promised Messiah as foretold by Scripture. 

St. Luke, the Gentile companion of St. Paul, wrote a 
Gospel about the year 85 for some Gentile Church, 
based on St. Mark and Q, with additional material of 
his own. His work shows particular interest in the 
Holy Spirit, in prayer, in the poor, in women, and in 
works of mercy. About the year 100 another Gospel 
was written, possibly for the Church in Ephesus, called 
the Gospel according to St. John, which was composed 
around seven great miracles, or signs, to show that 
Jesus was the Christ, the heavenly Son of God, and 
that those who thus believe might have life through 
His Name. Although the most spiritual in its interpre 
tation of the Person and meaning of Christ, it is the 
least historical as to the actual events of His life, and 
the speeches there attributed to Christ are almost in 
variably the composition of the unknown author him- 
self. These four Gospels were the first to be accepted 
by Christians as inspired sacred writings equal in au 
thority to the Hebrew Scriptures, and they form the 
first part of our New Testament. 

The next part is an account of the activities of two 
of the chief followers of our Lord, St. Peter and St. 
Paul, showing how Christianity spread from Jerusalem 



THE CHURCHES BIBLE 23 

to Rome, or in other words, how it became a universal 
as opposed to a local religion. It was written by St. 
Luke about the year 95 as a continuation of the Gospel 
composed by him and is called the Acts of the Apostles. 

Long before the Gospels were written, however, apos 
tles, absent from their Churches, sent them letters of 
encouragement and advice which were treasured in 
their archives and copies of which were sent to other 
Churches. The earliest and best known collection of 
these is the Epistles of St. Paul, which form the next 
section of the New Testament, although some of the 
fourteen letters included therein are now known not 
to be his work. Most of them were written to meet 
some particular need in the local Church, and are not 
to be taken as complete statements of either Christian 
doctrine or practice at that time, or as St. Paul's entire 
views on the subjects mentioned. The two Epistles ad 
dressed to St. Timothy and the one to St. Titus are 
commonly known as the Pastoral Epistles, and are in 
all probability the work of a Pauline disciple. The Epis 
tle to the Hebrews is the work of an unknown teacher, 
worried about the erroneous doctrines his pupils were 
absorbing in his absence, who sent them this letter to 
confirm them in the Faith. 

The next group of writings is the seven Catholic 
Epistles, so-called because supposed to be addressed to 
the Church as a whole, although this is obviously not 
true. The last book of the New Testament is the Reve 
lation of St. John the Divine, modeled on similar Jew 
ish apocalypses. It was written during the persecution 
under Domitian, about 96, to encourage Christians to 
remain true to the Faith and to refuse to join in the 
worship of the Roman Emperor, by showing them un- 



24 THE CHURCH'S BIBLE 

der well-known symbols the blessed reward of the 
martyrs in heaven and the destruction and 
future punishment of Rome. 

The book of the New Testament to be com 

posed, the so-called Second Epistle of St. Peter, was 
written about 150, but it was not until the second half 
of the fourth century that the canon of the New Testa 
ment, that is, the Hst of writings which were to be 
esteemed sacred and inspired alongside of the ancient 
Jewish Scriptures, was finally decided upon as we now 
have it. The Church was in existence, then, for some 
three hundred years before it finally made a definite 
decision as to just what books were to comprise its 
Bible. Long before this time a large part of its mem 
bers could no longer understand Greek. Consequently, 
translations were made in the third century into lan 
guages which they did understand: Syriac for the East- 
em Churches, Coptic for the Egyptian, and Latin for 
the Western. This last was the common Bible in the 
West, particularly in the translation made by St. Je 
rome and known as the Vulgate, down to the time of 
the Reformation in the sixteenth century, when vari 
ous translations into the common vernacular tongues 
were made. Of these Luther's translation into German 
is the most famous. 

In England there was a translation of the Gospels 
into Anglo-Saxon as early as the year 1000; and of the 
Bible into Middle English in the time of John Wyclif 
about 1380. Since the Reformation there have been 
several English translations of varying merit; among 
them Tyndale's New Testament (1525), Coverdale's 
Bible (1535), and the Great Bible (1539), from which 
the Psalter in the Prayer Book is taken. 



THE CHURCH'S BIBLE 25 

The Bible which Is commonly read In Church is 
that known as the Authorized Version, or King James 
Version, because the translation was published in 1611 
at his instigation. A Revised Version of this appeared 
in 1881, and an American Standard Version in 1901. 
The Revised Standard Version (1952) is an accurate, 
dignified translation into modern American EngEsh 
based on the results of the latest biblical scholarship. 
There have also been various modem translations by 
individuals, the best known of which are those by James 
Moffatt and E. J. Goodspeed. 

A knowledge of the Bible is essential to any correct 
understanding of Christianity, and the only way in 
which it can be acquired and maintained is by some 
systematic scheme of reading it. There are various 
books issued containing plans for daily Bible reading, 
and there is also the table of the daily lessons appointed 
to be read in Church, which can be found in the front 
of die Prayer Book. 

Not only is the Bible the source-book for a knowl 
edge of Christianity and one of the great literary heri 
tages of all ages, both in its original languages and in 
its Authorized English Version; it is also the world's 
greatest book in its power to comfort and sustain man 
in his trials, to inspire him to that which is good and 
beautiful, to guide him in his perplexities, to lift his 
thoughts heavenward, and to bring him into closer fel 
lowship with the God of all good life. 



BOOKS FOR FURTHER READING 

BEWER, J, A., The Literature of the Old Testament. Columbia 
University Press, New York. 



26 THE CHURCH'S BIBLE 

W. R., The Story of the Bibk. Abingdon Press, Nash 
ville. 

CLARKE, W. K. L., Concise Bible Commentary. Macmilian Co., 
New York. 

DEKTAX, R. C, The Scriptures. Scabury Press, New York, 

EISELEN, F. C, LEWIS, E., and DOWNEY, D. G., The Abingdon 
Bible Commentary. Abingdon Press, Nashville. 

Fosracfc, HL E n The Modern Use of the Bible. Macmiilan Co., 
New York. 

GOODSPEED, E. J., An Introduction to the New Testament. Uni 
versity of Chicago Press, Chicago. 

GOOBSPEED, E. J., and SMITH, J. M. R, The Complete Bible: An 
American Translation. University of Chicago Press, Chi 
cago. 

GORE, C., A New Commentary on Holy Scripture. Macmiilan 
Co., New York. 

HASTINGS, J., Dictionary of the Bible. Charles Scribner's Sons, 
New York. 

MOFFATT, J., The Holy Bible: A New Translation. Harper & 
Brothers, New York. 

Peace's Commentary on the Bible. Thomas Nelson & Sons, 
New York. 

SCOTT, E. F., The Literature of the New Testament. Columbia 
University Press, New York. 

WILSON, F. E,, An Outline of the New Testament. Morehouse- 
Barlow Co., New York, 

WILSON, F. E., An Outline of the Old Testament and Apoc 
rypha. Morehouse-Barlow Co., New York. 

The Interpreter's Bible. Abingdon Press, Nashville. 



CHAPTER IV 

THE CHURCH'S PRAYER BOOK 

1 I "HE earliest worship of the Christians followed the 
JL order used in the Jewish synagogue: Psalms; the 
reading of the Scriptures; the comment on the Scrip 
tures, or sermon; and prayers. In the course of time 
the Psalms, Scriptures, and prayers were arranged in 
seven offices to be said at seven different periods 
throughout each day (although in practice they were 
often combined), and collected in a book known as 
the Breviary. 

In. addition, the early Christians met in the evening 
for a common meal of fellowship, known as an Agape 
or Lovefeast. At the end of it they broke the bread 
and blessed the wine in thankful remembrance of the 
benefits which they had received from Christ's death, 
believing that in partaking of this Bread and Wine they 
were doing what their Lord had commanded them to 
do and were sharing in His Life. As time went on this 
celebration was divorced from the Agape and placed 
in the morning. The prayers which accompanied it 
became standardized in different localities, generally 
reflecting the usage of the principal Church of that 
region, and were contained in books known in the 
West as Missals. 

The Church of England until the Reformation had 
its various service books in Latin, but in the reign of 

27 



28 THE CHURCH'S PRAYER BOOK 

Edward 1 in the year 1549 these were simplified, 
translated into English, and combined into one book 
called the Book of Common Prayer. The liturgical 
practice at the Cathedral at Salisbury, known as the 
Sanim Rite, was the one chiefly followed. Three years 
later a revised book was issued which was little used. 
During the reign of Queen Mary the Church of Eng 
land reverted to the Latin Service Books, but in 1559 
in the reign of Elizabeth the Prayer Book was reissued 
in English and underwent various revisions until 1662. 
The Prayer Book of 1662 is still the official Prayer 
Book of the Church of England and was the one used 
in the early days in the American colonies. 

After the Revolutionary War at the General Con 
vention of the American Church in Philadelphia in 
1789 (the year of President Washington's inaugura 
tion), the first American Prayer Book was published, 
being a revision of the English Prayer Book of 1662, 
but in nowise departing from it in any essential of 
doctrine, discipline, or worship. This Prayer Book went 
through several slight revisions in succeeding years. In 
1892 a more complete revision was made, and in 1928 
the edition of the Prayer Book now in use in the Epis 
copal Church was issued. This revision not only 
brought the prayers more into conformity with modern 
thought, but also the service itself into closer agree 
ment with the best liturgical usage, and made provision 
for greater freedom in the arrangement of the daily 
services. 

Any change or alteration in the Prayer Book (except 
in the tables of Psalms and Lessons) must be passed 
by two succeeding General Conventions before it be 
comes effective. The present form of worship has gone 



THE CHURCH'S PRAYER BOOK 29 

through many stages and changes in the long history 
behind it. The Prayer Book contains prayers and 
blessings as old as the sixth century B.C. and as modern 
as the twentieth century AJX 

The Prayer Book opens with prefatory matter in re 
gard to the conduct of worship, the fixing of the 
date of Easter, and the feasts and fasts to be observed 
in the Church. Following this comes the first section of 
the Prayer Book containing the daily offices, derived 
from the ancient breviaries. Morning and Evening 
Prayer are intended to be said daily, and the structure 
of the two services is the same, although there are 
some differences. 

They begin with an invitation to worship, the open 
ing sentences, and are followed by a general confession 
of sins, a general absolution, and the Lord's Prayer. 
The confession comes here in order that the hindrance 
of sin may be removed and the soul set free of any 
barrier between itself and God. The confession is really 
one of sinfulness rather than of sins, and in one's pri 
vate prayers before and at that time it should be made 
an individual confession of particular sins. The Lord's 
Prayer following is to be found in every service of the 
Church and is to be said by the people with the minis 
ter. 

Then come the versicles and responses, short verses, 
mostly from the Psalms, including the ancient ascrip 
tion of praise to the Trinity, the Gloria Patri. In Morn 
ing Prayer there follows the Venite, a cento of the 95th 
and 96th Psalms, This is followed by the reading of 
the Psalter responsively by the minister and people, or 
else it is chanted by the choir and people. After each 
the Gloria Patri is sung or said. Then comes the 



30 THE CHURCH'S PRAYER BOOK 

First Lesson, always taken from the Old Testament or 
Apocrypha, and followed by a canticle. In Morning 
Prayer this may be the Tc Deum, the ancient hymn of 
praise and thanksgiving of the Church, and the only 
canticle after which the Gloria is not sung, as the hymn 
itself is an act of praise to the three Persons of the 
blessed Trinity; or it may be the Bcncdictus Es or 
Bencdicite on less joyful occasions. In Evening Prayer 
it is generally the Magnificat, the song which the Blessed 
Virgin is supposed to have sung on her visit to St. 
Elizabeth. Then comes the Second Lesson taken from 
the New Testament and followed in Morning Prayer 
by either the Remdictus, the song St. Zacharias is 
supposed to have sung at the circumcision of his son 
St. John Baptist, or the Jubilate, the 100th Psalm. In 
Evening Prayer there generally follows the Nunc Di- 
mittis, which St Simeon is reported to have sung when 
he saw our Lord presented in the Temple. This con 
cludes the section of praise and instruction. The Apos 
tles' Creed is then recited; and this is followed by the 
versicles; and then the prayers and the grace (taken 
from the ending of St Paul's second letter to the 
Corinthians). 

The Litany (a series of short precatory sentences 
said by the minister and followed by petitionary sen 
tences said by the people), Prayers and Thanksgivings 
for various objects, and a Penitential Office make up 
the rest of this section. 

The second section of the Prayer Book is composed 
of the Order for the Administration of the Holy Com 
munion, and the Collects, Epistles, and Gospels which 
are read during it. It is derived from the ancient Mis 
sals, the books containing the order of service for the 



THE CHURCH'S PRAYER BOOK 31 

Mass. In the course of time there developed In the 
East four great orders of service in Greek: the Liturgy 
of St. James in use at Jerusalem, the Liturgy of St. 
Mark in use at Alexandria, and the Liturgies of St. 
Basil and of St. Chrysostom in use at Constantinople. 
In addition^ the Syrian, Coptic, and other Churches had 
in their own languages orders of service peculiar to 
themselves. 

In the West, in Latin, there were two chief distinct 
usages, the Roman and the Gallican. The earliest ex 
tensive example of the Roman is that of the so-called 
Leonine Sacramentary of the sixth century, followed 
by the Gelasian Sacramentary of the seventh century, 
and later the eighth century Gregorian Sacramentary. 
The English Liturgy is developed from the Roman 
usage, particularly as observed at the Cathedral in 
Salisbury from the eleventh century on. The American 
Liturgy deviates from the English in its prayer of con 
secration, which follows that of the Scottish Church, 
which is, in turn, derived from Eastern models. 

The Communion Service opens with a prayer for 
the preparation of the hearts of those present that they 
may worthily worship God. Then comes the announce 
ment of God's moral law, followed by the Kyrie, an 
ancient petition to the Trinity for pardon for having 
broken that law. Next follows the Collect of the Day. 
A collect is a short prayer according to a standard 
form, consisting of address, statement about the per 
son addressed, petition, desired result of petition, and 
conclusion, in which one particular thought is collected 
or summed up. This is followed by the Epistle, read 
from the Epistle corner of the altar (the right as one 
faces it), and then the Gospel (taken from one of the 



32 THE CHURCH'S PRAYER BOOK 

four Gospels) read from the opposite corner. The 
grcgation then declares its faith in the Gospel by recit 
ing the Creed. The sermon (when there is one) is in 
tended to be an explanation of the Gospel (though not 
necessarily confined to the particular Gospel just read). 
Ned: comes the offertory, which always includes the 
offering of the bread and wine (purchased out of the 
offerings of the people), and frequently includes as 
well the actual offering of their money, symbolizing the 
offering of their material resources for the spread of 
the Gospel. 

Then comes the intercessory prayer for the mem 
bers of the Church both in this world and in the next 
the remembrance of their general and special needs 
in their several callings. Following this the invitation 
to partake of the Holy Communion is extended to those 
who have faith and penitence, and as an expression of 
that penitence a general confession is then made, fol 
lowed by a general absolution, and the recalling to 
mind of certain New Testament passages full of com 
fort to those who have sinned, known as the Com 
fortable Words. 

Now begins the most sacred part of the service, 
opening with the versicles known as Sursum Cor da and 
followed by the Sanctus, in which man lifts up his 
heart to God in words of adoring praise, taken partly 
from those which Isaiah heard in his vision in the 
Temple. The concluding words of the Sanctus lead up 
to the opening words of the prayer of consecration, 
which is divided into four parts: the consecration, the 
oblation, the invocation, and the conclusion. The 
bread and wine are now consecrated to be the Body 
and Blood of Christ, and are offered to the Father in 



THE CHURCH'S PRAYER BOOK 33 

commemoration of the sacrifice which Christ made 
upon the cross; the Holy Spirit is invoked to bless 
them; and along with this offering man offers his own 
self to God and prays that he may obtain remission of 
his sins and live in communion with Christ. The con 
gregation acknowledges our Lord's Presence in the Sac 
rament by repeating the prayer which He taught, fol 
lowed by an act of humility in which its unworthiness, 
but for God's mercy, to partake of the Sacrament is 
declared in the words of the Prayer of Humble Access, 

The priest and the congregation partake of the Sac 
rament, and thereby enter into spiritual communion 
and fellowship with God, and nourish their souls on the 
self-sacrifice of His love. After which, thanks are re 
turned to Him for this communion, and prayer is made 
that they may ever continue in fellowship with Him. 
Next comes the Gloria in cxcdsis (although in peni 
tential seasons and on ferias a hymn is often substi 
tuted for it) as a further expression of praise and 
thanksgiving. The service then ends with the blessing. 

The Collects, Epistles, and Gospels are arranged in 
two sections in the order of their occurrence in the 
Church year. The first part contains those for the 
movable feasts (those which occur on a different calen 
dar date each year), beginning with Advent Sunday 
and ending with the Sunday next before Advent. The 
second part contains those for the fixed holy days 
(those which occur on the same calendar date each 
year). There are two exceptions to be noted. In the 
midst of the movable feasts, in their proper occur 
rence, have been placed the fixed feasts from Christmas 
to Epiphany inclusive, and at the end of the fixed 



34 THE CHURCH'S PRAYER BOOK 

feasts have been placed a few Collects, Epistles, and 
Gospels for special occasions. 

The third section of the Prayer Book contains the 
Occasional Offices, services which are only used on 
certain occasions in a person's life, arranged more or 
less in the usual order of their occurrence: Holy Bap 
tism, Offices of Instruction for Confirmation, the Con 
firmation Service, the Marriage Service, a Thanksgiv 
ing of Women after Child-birth, Services for the Visita 
tion and Communion of the Sick, and the Burial 
Service, 

The fourth section contains the Psalter, the ancient 
hymn book of the Jewish Church, composed at various 
periods in its history, David was traditionally regarded 
as the author, but very few, if any of the Psalms are 
from his hand or time. The 150 Psalms are divided into 
units to be read at Morning and Evening Prayer during 
the thirty days of the month. If there are thirty-one 
days, those for the thirtieth are usually repeated. 

Then follows the Ordinal, or services for the ordina 
tion of deacons and priests and the consecration of 
bishops. Here are also forms for the consecration of 
churches and the institution of ministers into the 
charge of churches. 

There follows the old Catechism, still one of the 
most valuable summaries of Christian doctrine and a 
helpful thing for any child to know; and then Prayers 
for Family Use, which are excellent for private prayer 
as well The Thirty-Nine Articles of Religion, origi 
nally set forth in 1562, are an antiquated statement of 
Christian doctrine, many of whose statements are of 
doubtful validity, and should not, in the opinion of 
many, be printed in the Prayer Book. This concludes 



THE CHURCH'S PRAYER BOOK 35 

the Book of Common Prayer, one of the great literary 
and devotional heritages of our race. To its measured 
and restrained Elizabethan English is due in no small 
measure the beauty of Anglican worship as it exists to 
day. 

In 1964 the General Convention authorized "propers" 
for minor holy days, for trial use in parishes having 
frequent weekday services. These have been published 
in a supplementary volume, The Collects, Epistles, and 
Gospels for Lesser Holy Days (Church Pension Fund). 

BOOKS FOR FURTHER READING 

CLARKE, W. K. L., Liturgy and Worship. Seabury Press. New 

York. 
DEARMER, P., The Story of the Prayer Boo\ in the Old and New 

World and Throughout the Anglican Church. Oxford 

University Press, New York. 

HEBERT, A. G., Liturgy and Society, Faber and Faber, London, 
PARSONS, E. L., and JONES, B. H., The American Prayer Boo^_. 

Charles Scribner's Sons, New York. 

SHEPHERD, M. EL, Jr., The Oxford American Prayer Boo^ Com 
mentary. Oxford University Press, New York. 
SHEPHERD, M. BE., Jr., The Worship of the Church. Seabury 

Press, New York. 

UNDERBILL, E., Worship. Harper & Row, New York. 
WILSON, F. E., An Outline of the Prayer Boo^. Morehouse- 

Barlow Co New York. 



CHAPTER V 

THE CHURCH'S RITUAL 

THE CHURCH YEAR 

TUST as there is a civil calendar with its seasons and 
J holidays, so also there is an ecclesiastical. The eccle 
siastical year begins with Advent Sunday (the fourth 
Sunday before Christmas) and comprises nine seasons: 
Advent (a penitential season in preparation both for 
Christmas and the coming of Christ as Judge) ; Christ 
mas (celebrating the birth of our Lord); Epiphany 
(celebrating our Lord's manifestation to all nations as 
typified in the coining of the Wise Men and in His bap 
tism); Pre-Lent (an intermediate season in which to 
prepare for Lent) ; Lent (a penitential season in prepa 
ration for Easter); Easter (celebrating the resurrec 
tion of our Lord) ; Ascensiontide (celebrating the uni- 
versalization of our Lord's ministry); Whitsuntide 
(celebrating the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon 
the disciples); and Trinity season (commemorating 
the eternal mystery of God's Being). The time and 
length of many of these seasons are dependent upon 
the date of Easter, which is always the first Sunday 
after the full moon (computed according to an ancient 
reckoning) occurring after March 21st. 

There are three kinds of days in the ecclesiastical 
year, all beginning with the letter /; feasts, fasts, and 
f frias. A feast is a day of rejoicing, a fast is a day of 

36 



THE CHURCHES RITUAL 37 

penitence and abstention in varying measure from 
food, and a fcria is an ordinary day which is neither a 
feast nor a fast. Feasts may be either movable or im 
movable. A movable feast is one like Easter, which 
occurs on a different day of the month each year; while 
an immovable feast is one like Christmas, which al 
ways occurs on December 25th. A holy day is a day 
held sacred by the Church and may be either a feast or 
a fast. All Sundays of the year are feasts, being com 
memorations of the resurrection of our Lord, which oc 
curred on the first day of the week. 

Fasts are divided into two kinds: days of strict fast 
ing and days when it is customary to abstain from cer 
tain kinds of foods. Of the first class there are only two 
days observed in the Episcopal Church: Ash Wednes 
day (the first day of Lent) and Good Friday (the day 
on which our Lord was crucified). On them it is gen 
erally customary to abstain from all food and drink 
from the midnight preceding until three o'clock in 
the afternoon, and then only to partake of such food as 
is necessary, and in no case to eat meat. On fast days 
of the second class it is usually customary to abstain 
from eating meat, and from having elaborate meals, and 
from giving parties or entertainments. Fasting, when 
religiously and sensibly used, can become an effective 
means of self-discipline which will bear spiritual fruit. 

A Christian is expected to keep appropriately the 
Church's feasts and fasts. He is expected to attend di 
vine worship every Sunday and on the great feasts oc 
curring during the week (Christmas, Epiphany, Ascen 
sion, All Saints, Thanksgiving), and on such other holy 
days as he is able. He is expected to observe the fast 
days with appropriate acts of penitence, and to refrain 



38 THE CHURCH'S RITUAL 

from work on Good Friday, and to attend Church on 
that day. On Christmas,, Easter, and Whitsunday, after 
due preparation, he is expected to make his Commu 
nion, and to receive the Sacrament throughout the res! 
of the year with such frequency as is to him spiritually 
helpful. 

During Advent Christians are expected to make some 
special religious effort In preparation for Christmas. It 
is an excellent time to read through one of the Gospels 
and to undertake some form of Christian, social service. 
Lent is not so much a time for giving up things as It is 
of taking on additional religious activity. It often hap 
pens that In order to assume extra spiritual activities 
It is necessary to cease spending time and money on 
personal pleasures; but It Is a silly thing merely to give 
up eating candy without contributing the money so 
saved to charity, or not to go to the theatre without at 
the same time attending extra Lenten services. The 
usual observance of Lent includes not attending or giv 
ing formal social parties; some abstinence in the mat 
ter of food and drink; frequent attendance at church 
servkes > extra Bible reading, and some extra form of 
Christian service activity. 

Each of the seasons and holy days has a color ap 
propriate to its meaning, taken from the five common 
ecclesiastical colors: white > purple, green, red, and 
black. White is the color of joy, and is used on the 
great feasts such as Christmas and Easter, and on the 
feasts of saints who were not martyrs. It is used also at 
baptisms, confirmations, marriages, and ordinations. 
Purple is the color of penitence, and is used during 
Advent and Lent. Green is the color of nature, and is 
used on the ordinary Sundays and f erias after Epiphany 



THE CHURCHES RITUAL 39 

and Trinity. Red is the color of blood, and is used on 
the of martyrs and on Whitsunday (because of 

the fiery which were thought to alighted 

on the disciples* heads). Black is the color of mourn 
ing, is on Good Friday and at burials and 

requiems. 

CHURCH BUILDINGS 

The plan of a church building may be seen at its 
best in the Gothic cathedral. A cathedral is the mother 
church of a diocese in which the bishop has his ca 
thedra or throne. It is divided into three main parts: 
the nave (or ship of salvation) in which the people sit, 
the choir in which the singers and ministers sit, and 
the sanctuary in which the high altar stands. The choir 
and sanctuary together form the chancel, which is 
divided from the nave by the chancel rail, or else by a 
screen. This is called a rood-screen if it bears upon it a 
rood (an old Anglo-Saxon word for cross). The sanctu 
ary is divided from the choir by the communion or 
altar rail. The altar is a constant reminder that the 
way of sacrifice is the only means of approach to God. 
Behind the altar may be a stone or wooden reredos i 
often elaborately carved, or else there may hang cur 
tains known as a dossal. Sometimes curtains, called rid 
dels, extend out on both sides of the altar. The rear por 
tion of the altar is often raised, forming a retable upon 
which the cross, candles, and flower vases are generally 
placed. In the Episcopal Church at each end of the 
retable is generally a tall candlestick. These are known 
as eucharistic lights because they are lighted only at 
the celebration of the Holy Communion. In the centef 
stands a cross of various designs. If it bears upon it a 
corpus, or figure of our Lord, it is known as a crucifix, 



40 THE CHURCH'S RITUAL 

There may be also on cither side of the cross various 
candlesticks, often seven-branched, known as office 
lights, which are lighted at the other services besides 
Holy Communion. The top of the altar is generally 
marked with five crosses, commemorating the five 
wounds of our Lord, and at the time of the Holy 
Communion bears a fair linen cloth upon it. 

In the choir the choristers sit in choir stalls and the 
clergy in clergy stalls, while in the nave the people sit 
in pews or else on what are known as cathedral chairs, 
In the sanctuary on the Gospel side Is placed a seat 
for the bishop and on the Epistle side, as a rule, three 
seats, or scdilia, for the clergy. Near to the scdilia on the 
sanctuary wall is generally a small shelf or niche known 
as the credence table, upon which the bread-box and 
the cruets of wine and water for the Communion Serv 
ice are placed. 

In every church there is a baptismal font, often 
placed near the door to signify that baptism is the en 
trance to the Church. As baptism is symbolically the 
resurrection to a new Hf e, fonts are often octagonal 
in shape because there are eight accounts of resurrec 
tions in the Bible. 

Cathedrals are as a rule cruciform, that is, built in 
the shape of a cross, and with the high altar at the east 
ern end facing towards Jerusalem, where it was believed 
that the second coming of the Lord would occur, but in 
all likelihood placed there rather to get the morning 
light. The arms of the cross are known as the tran 
septs, the nave forming the shaft, the crossing the 
intersection, and the apse the head of the shaft of the 
cross. Within the apse is the chancel, and often around 
the chancel there is an aisle known as an ambulatory, 



THE CHURCHES RITUAL 41 

off of which there may be various chapels, known as 
apsidal chapels, the one directly behind the high altar 
generally being dedicated to the Virgin and known as 
the Lady Chapel. Along the side aisles of the nave are 
often placed various chapels, and at its western end 
there is the narthex or vestibule. 

Ordinarily parish churches conform to a large extent 
to this same arrangement, being always divided into 
the same three parts of nave, choir, sanctuary, although 
seldom cruciform in shape. 

CHURCH SYMBOLISM 

There are various symbols found in the carving and 
glass of churches which have come throughout the 
ages to stand for certain great Christian truths. The 
symbols of the Godhead are many, the principal ones 
being the triangle and trefoil representing the Trinity, 
the circle the eternity of God, die hand the power of 
God the Father, and the dove God the Holy Spirit. 

The symbols of our Lord are numerous, in addition 
to the obvious symbols of His birth > such as the star, 
and of His passion, such as the cross, the whipping 
post, the crown of thorns, and the nails. The A and Q 
(Alpha and Omega, the first and last letters of the 
Greek alphabet) represent Him as the beginning and 
end of all things. The IHS are the first three Greek 
letters of His Name Jesus. They also represent the 
Latin lesus Hominum Sdvator (Jesus Saviour of Men), 
The Chi Rho (XP) stands for Christ, being the first 
two Greek letters of that name. The pelican, which 
was supposed to feed its young with its own blood, 
stands for our Lord feeding men in the Holy Com 
munion with His Body and Blood. The phoenix, which 



42 THE CHURCH'S RITUAL 

rose again from Its own ashes, symbolizes the resurrec 
tion of our Lord. He is also frequently pictured as the 
Good Shepherd and as the Agnus Dei, the Lamb of 
God, the Lamb frequently holding a pennon. The fish 
was an early symbol for Christ as IX0YS, the word for 
fish in Greek, was regarded as being composed of the 
first letters of the phrase which in English means, 
"Jesus Christ, Son of God, Saviour." The vine sym 
bolizes our Lord's reference to Himself as the true 
Vine (St. John 15:1). 

The evangelists, as a rule, are pictured holding a 
book, and with their own appropriate symbols (taken 
from Ezekiel 1: 10 and Revelation 4:7) beside them: 
the man for St. Matthew; the winged lion for St. Mark; 
the ox for St. Luke; and the eagle for St. John. Martyrs 
are generally represented with the instrument of their 
martyrdom; St. Paul, for instance, being pictured with 
a sword. Builders of cathedrals often hold a model of 
the cathedral in their hands. Bishops generally wear 
cope and mitre and hold a crozier, and archbishops a 
cross with a small crossbar above the usual crossbeam. 
St. Peter as a rule carries the two keys, the golden key 
of heaven and the iron key of hell. 

The cross also, as well as the shield, represents faith, 
the anchor hope, and the heart charity or love. The 
crown and the palm represent the victory of the saints. 
The cross and the crown together symbolize the fact 
that in order to wear the crown it is necessary to bear 
the cross. 

VESTMENTS 

Clergymen, choir men and boys, and acolytes wear 
over their ordinary clothing a long gown with sleeves 



THE CHURCH'S RITUAL 43 

known as a cassock. Its color is generally black, al 
though in cathedral churches it is often purple (the 
episcopal color), and acolytes often wear red. At the 
choir offices (Morning and Evening Prayer) over this 
the clergy wear a surplice, a white linen garment reach 
ing as a rule to the knees. Choir men and servers some 
times wear a shorter linen overgarment known as a 
cotta. Many clergymen wear hoods, which signify vari 
ous academic degrees conferred by educational institu 
tions, and which vary in size, shape, and color in ac 
cordance with the particular degree, faculty, and insti 
tution. Over this at choir offices clergy generally wear 
a black scarf, often called a tippet. At sacramental 
services clergy wear stoles, differing in color according 
to the nature of the service, or, at the Holy Com 
munion, according to the day of the Church year. 

Bishops wear over their cassocks, often purple in 
color, a white garment known as a rochet, and over 
this a black silk garment (sometimes purple or red), 
with white lawn sleeves and cuffs, known as a 
chimere. They generally wear hoods and scarves. 

At the services of the Holy Communion some clergy 
wear the so-called eucharistic vestments over their cas 
socks. These consist of the amice or large linen collar; 
the alb, a long white gown with sleeves covering the 
cassock; the cincture or girdle; the stole crossed over 
their breast (unless a bishop, who wears his hanging 
straight down); the maniple (like the stole, of the 
color for that day) hanging from his left forearm; 
and over all the chasuble (sometimes of linen, but gen 
erally of silk of the color of the day), a handsomely 
embroidered garment. While other clergy wear simply 
the customary cassock, surplice, and stole. 



44 THE CHURCH'S RITUAL 

Sometimes bishops and other clergy in processions 
wear copes, which are elaborately embroidered silk 
capes. Bishops traditionally wear mitres on ceremonial 
occasions and carry, or have carried before them, their 
pastoral staff or crozier, which is symbolic of their of 
fice of chief shepherd of God's flock, the Church. 

COMMUNION LINEN AND VESSELS 

The altar at a celebration of the Holy Communion is 
traditionally covered with three cloths. The first is the 
cere cloth covering the top of the altar. Over this is 
placed a larger white linen cloth and over that the fair 
linen cloth prescribed by the Prayer Book rubric. 

The vessels used in administering the Holy Com 
munion are a round plate of precious metal called a 
paten on which the bread, generally in the form of 
wafers, is placed, and a cup or chalice of like precious 
metal for the wine. These are placed upon the altar on 
the corporal, a small square of white linen placed upon 
the fair linen cloth. The other Communion linens are a 
pall (a stiffened square of linen to cover the chalice), 
a purificator for wiping the chalice dry after the cleans 
ing or ablutions at the end of the service, and some 
times a linen chalice veil. The chalice and paten are 
brought to the altar covered by a silk veil of the color 
of the day on top of which rests the burse, a square 
pocket made of die silk of the color of the day con 
taining the corporal. On the credence table are the two 
cruets of wine acd water and the bread-box or ciborium. 

CHURCH CUSTOMS 

It is customary on entering an Episcopal church to 
go quietly to one's seat and kneel and say a prayer, in 



THE CHURCHES RITUAL 45 

which one prays for the Church, for those who minister 
there, for those who worship there, and for oneself 
that one may be strengthened and refreshed through 
one's worship. During the service there is a threefold 
general rule of posture: Sit for instruction, stand for 
praise, kneel for prayer. Consequently, one sits for the 
lessons, the announcements, the sermon, and for 
the Epistle in the Communion Service. One stands for 
the hymns, Psalms, canticles, the Creed, and, as a 
special mark of respect, for the Gospel in the Com 
munion Service. One kneels, not hunches, for the 
prayers, confession and absolution, and the blessing. 

The priest, as the representative of our Lord, stands 
when he gives the absolution and the blessing. In the 
Communion Service he faces the altar when speaking 
to 'God, and the people when speaking to them. 

Many Christians, in accordance with Philippians 
2:10 and as an act of reparation for the blasphemous 
use of our Lord's Name, bow their heads not only in 
the Creeds at the mention of "Jesus" but also when 
ever else it is spoken. People also often bow their 
heads at any ascription to the Trinity, such as "Glory 
be to the Father, and to the Son, and to the Holy 
Ghost," or "Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost," or 
"Holy, Holy, Holy, Lord God of hosts." Many people 
bow their heads to the cross, when passing before the 
altar or when the cross is carried in procession past 
them, just as men salute the flag when carried in pro 
cession, or members of the English House of Lords bow 
to the throne when passing it. 

There are members of the Episcopal Church who 
like to show special reverence to our Lord's Presence 
in the Holy Communion by genuflecting, that is a kneel- 



46 THE CHURCH'S RITUAL 

ing on their right knee, when the consecrated Bread 
and Wine are on the altar. They also like vividly to 
recall to themselves our Lord's Passion, and, conse 
quently, often make the sign of the cross, touching 
with their right hand their forehead, breastbone, left 
shoulder, right shoulder. This is commonly done at the 
beginning and end of their private prayers, at the abso 
lution, at the end of the creeds, at the beginning of the 
Magnificat, before the reception of the elements of 
the Holy Communion, at the blessing, and at grace 
before and .after meals. 

At baptisms and weddings it is the custom for the 
congregation to stand during the entire ceremony, and 
at confirmations the congregation stands until the 
Lord's Prayer following the actual laying-on-of-hands 
upon the candidates. At burials the congregation is 
supposed to take part in the service and to stand, sit, 
and kneel as it would at any other church service, even 
when it is held at home or in some secular building. 
When the committal is said indoors in connection with 
the rest of the service, the congregation should stand. 
At the end of the Burial Service it is customary for 
those present to remain in their places until the pall 
bearers and chief mourners have left the church. 

Whenever candles are lighted upon the altar or in 
the sanctuary the congregation is expected to remain 
quietly at its private prayers after the service until the 
last candle is extinguished. Before leaving the church 
one should kneel down and say a prayer asking God 
to bless the service that it may bring forth fruit in one's 
life, and that He may strengthen and protect those 
present and all others of His children; and, if one has 
received the Holy Communion, a special act of thanks- 



THE CHURCH'S RITUAL 47 

giving should be made for the benefits which have been 
received through participation in it. 

When a person is to receive Holy Communion he 
should come quietly to the communion rail; kneel 
down when there is room; and, with the right hand 
crossed over the left, receive the sacred Host into the 
open palm of the right hand and convey it to the mouth 
without handling it, and consume it without touching 
it with the teeth. When the minister comes with the 
chalice, the communicant should hold his head erect, 
and guide the chalice to his lips by gently taking hold 
of the foot, not the rim, with the right hand. It is suf 
ficient that the Sacred Wine touch the lips. The Com 
munion is not an act of eating or drinking, but of spir 
itual communion through the consecrated Bread and 
Wine. Gloves should be removed and veils lifted before 
approaching the communion rail. If there are only a 
few people at the rail, it is usual to wait until all have 
been communicated before returning to one's seat; but 
if there are people waiting, it is customary to return as 
soon as the minister administering the chalice has 
communicated the second person beyond one. 

BOOKS FOR FURTHER READING 

Boss, N. R., The Prayer BooJ^ Reason Why. Morehouse-Barlow 

Co., New York. 
FERGUSON, G. 5 Signs and Symbols in Christian Art. Oxford 

University Press, New York. 
GRIFFITH, H. S., The Sign Language of Our Faith. Morehouse- 

Barlow Co., New York. 
POST, W. ELLWOOD, Saints, Signs and Symbols. Morehouse- 

Barlow Co., New York. 
SMAUT, H., The Altar: Its Ornaments and Care. Morehouse- 

Barlow Co., New York. 
WILSON, F. E., An Outline of Christian Symbolism. Morehouse- 

Barlow Co., New York. 



CHAPTER VI 

THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 

T T IS no easy matter to summarize the Church's teach- 
JL ing in a few pages, but the attempt must be made, 

nevertheless, to state briefly some of its most funda 
mental beliefs. 

THE DOCTRINE OF GOD 

There is one God, uncreated and unchangeable, who 
has always existed and will always exist. His being is 
Spirit and His nature love, goodness, truth, and beauty. 
He is all-powerful and all-wise and everywhere present. 
God by His very nature is self-limited so that He can 
not do anything that is evil, absurd, or irrational. 

Within the non-numerical unity of the Godhead there 
are three eternal distinctions, which we name Father, 
Son, and Holy Spirit, and together call the Trinity. 
(Holy Ghost is an older form of the name Holy Spirit, 
coining from the Anglo-Saxon Hdig Gast, which means 
Holy Spirit) These distinctions correspond to three 
eternal activities of God, those of creation, redemption, 
and sanctification. They are called Persons, but the 
word has a special technical meaning, not that gener 
ally given to it in ordinary conversation, and it in no 
way implies that there are three distinctive personalities 
within the Godhead. 

48 



THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 49 

GOD THE FATHER 

God the Father started the process by which the 
entire universe, including man, is still being created. 
The Church is not committed to any theory of the 
exact way in which God creates, but only to the fact 
that He, and He alone, is Creator. Not only does God 
create, but He also sustains, provides for, watches 
over, and cares for that which He has created. 
This is known as the Providence of God. As a Father 
God rules His creation, and through discipline trains 
His children, 

GOD THE SON 

God the Son, the Second Person of the Trinity, be 
came Man in the Person of Jesus Christ; God Himself 
starting the process by which He was born as a Man 
among men of the Virgin Mary. God became Man, in 
order that men might become like God. In the one 
Person of Jesus Christ there were both a complete divine 
and a complete human nature, united from then on 
inseparably and without mixture or confusion, so that 
Jesus Christ is both perfect God and perfect Man. 
Through His life of perfect obedience to God's will, 
culminating in His death upon the cross, He made 
atonement for the sins of men and showed them how 
they might break the power of sin over their lives and 
attain unto the righteousness of God. 

Not only is Christ our Redeemer, but He is also the 
Revelation of God's Love, the Word or Logos, the Re- 
vealer of what God is like and what God wants man to 
be like. In Him we see the divine life humanly lived 
and human life divinely lived. He is not only the 
Founder, but also the Head of the Christian Church, 



50 THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 

the Lord and Master to whom Christians owe obedl- 
oice > love* and devotion. 

GOD THE HOLY SPIRIT 

If one were to translate God the Holy Spirit, the 
Third Person of the Trinity, Into modern terms, the 
nearest equivalent would be the Mind of God. He it Is 
who acts upon men's minds, inspiring them to good, 
warning them from evil, giving them creative ability, 
guiding them, and leading them more and more into 
Sic way of holiness; In other words, He is the Sanctifier. 
He is not conscience, which Is merely man's mind act- 
Ing in moral judgment, but He is the Educator of con 
science. 

THE DOCTRINE OF SALVATION 

Man is born with a free will of his own into an Im 
perfect world with natural instincts which, when not 
controlled and sanctified, lead to sin. Sin Is the con 
scious choosing of the worse of two alternatives, dis 
obedience to the will of God, the failure to rise to the 
possibilities within one. Sin erects a barrier between 
men and God and hinders the free and full communi 
cation with Him in prayer. Through the atonement 
made on the cross by Christ it is possible for man to 
obtain the forgiveness of his sins when he repents and 
to obtain, besides, the power to conquer sin and live a 
life in communion with God, which is the real meaning 
of salvation. Salvation is being saved not only from 
sin but also being saved unto righteousness. God in His 
infinite mercy treats those who pledge themselves to 
Him in baptism and seriously attempt to live accord 
ing to His will as saved, although they have not as yet 
attained that state of full surrender and communion 



THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 51 

with Him. This is what is called in theological language 
justification by faith. Salvation is a present fact, and 
one which can always be gained or as long as man 
has free will. 

THE DOCTRINE OF EVIL 

Philosophers of all ages, religions, and climes have 
grappled with fjie problem of evil and its reconcilia 
tion with the belief in an all-powerful God who is at 
the same time both good and loving. Our Lord con 
tributed no philosophical explanation to the solution of 
this problem, but He did, however, show us how to act 
in the face of the problem and how to conquer it. There 
are, consequently, certain things which can be said 
which partly explain it. No evil from outside can really 
harm a man except as he himself lets it do so. The evil 
that harms a man is not what Nature or others may do 
to him, but that evil which he himself does. The doc 
trine of free will presupposes that goodness is not a 
passive state, or freedom from sin, but an active state, 
a performance of good in face of the possibility of not 
doing it, which is sin or evil. Out of every evil, good can 
be brought and generally has been. As neither man nor 
the world has reached perfection, evil is in some way 
connected with the process of creation. God does not 
work any special favors or punishments either to ex 
empt from, or to afflict with evil any particular person 
or group of persons. The goodness of one's life is no 
protection from physical evil, or temptation to moral 
evil, although it can ward off the effects of evil upon 
one's own character. Our Lord taught us to triumph 
over evil instead of letting evil triumph over us, and it 
is within the power of any individual who relies upon 
the power of God to do likewise. 



52 THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 

THE DOCTRINE OF THE CHURCH 

The Church technically consists of all who have been 
baptized with water in the Name of the Trinity. It is 
the Body of Christ made up of members of varying 
gifts, all acknowledging Jesus Christ as the divine Lord 
of their life. Not only in its members individually, but 
also in the Church corporately, dwells the Holy Spirit, 
giving to the Church its life, and leading it and its 
members into all truth. The Church has been tradi 
tionally divided into the Church Militant here on earth 
fighting the battle against sin, the Church Expectant 
in the intermediate state, and the Church Triumphant 
in heaven. In more modern terms the Church is one in 
the Lord, and her members have their fellowship with 
one another, both in this life and in the life to come, 
through their fellowship with the one Lord, their pos 
session of the one Spirit, and their common brother 
hood as children of the one Father of all. 

The Church exists to continue the work which Christ 
began upon earth, to hold up before men the revelation 
of God made through Jesus Christ, and to help men to 
attain unto the quality of life which God intended for 
them. Its corporate life is regulated and preserved 
through a validly appointed ministry in succession to 
the original apostles. Its members are strengthened ancf 
helped forward in their struggle to become Christlike 
through its sacraments, which are the channels of God's 
spiritually uplifting influence on the lives of men. 

THE DOCTRINE OF THE LAST THINGS 

God wills that all men should become like His Son 
Jesus Christ in the moral and spiritual quality of their 



THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 53 

lives; that they should live In communion with Him,, 
in other words, that they should live eternally. Conse 
quently, such a life Is Independent of time or space. 
Modern Christians generally believe that there are two 
realms of man's existence: the first one on this earth 
in which he dwells in a material body of flesh and 
blood; and the second one, which Is entered through 
the portal of death, a spiritual realm in which man has 
a spiritual body fitted to the needs of such an existence 
and where he Is set free from the limitations of time 
and space. This Implies that the spirits of those we 
love who have gone before are ever present with us 
wherever we are. 

In the next world man Is set free not only from the 
pain of the mortal body he possesses here, but from its 
needs such as food and drink; and all human distinc 
tions based on wealth, social position, or physical prow 
ess cease to exist. Death does not, however, end man's 
opportunity to progress morally and spiritually. The 
good and the bad are alike together In the next world 
as they are here, and yet there is a vast separation be 
tween them in the quality of their lives. They are living 
on different planes of existence. One is living in heaven, 
that is, with God and sharing the joys attendant upon 
so doing; another is living apart from Him and par 
taking of the misery attendant upon separation from 
Him. As for the judgment, that is a present thing. 
Our Lord is Judge In that His life is the standard by 
which our lives are judged, and whenever we com 
pare our lives with His we are thereby judged. The 
Church, still patiently awaiting the final consumma 
tion of all things in Christ, does look forward to a 
time both in this world and in the next in which the 



54 THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 

power of sin shall grow less and less and the influence 
of God's love, or grace, increasingly greater, until at 
last all men shall attain unto the stature of Christ, 
which is eternal salvation. 

THE CREEDS 

The principal beliefs of the Church are summed up 
in its three great historical creeds: Apostles', Nicene, 
and Athanasian. The American Church has omitted the 
Athanasian Creed from its Prayer Book on account 
of the strangeness of some of its language, but it has 
in nowise repudiated the doctrine of the Trinity con 
tained therein. 

The Apostles' Creed 

The Apostles' Creed in the middle ages was regarded 
as having been composed by the Twelve Apostles, and 
hence its name. It certainly does contain apostolic 
teaching, but its formation was a matter of consider 
able time. It arose in the Church of Rome about 140 
as a statement of belief recited by the candidate at 
his baptism. It attained its final form in the eighth 
century, being added to from time to time as various 
false beliefs or heresies arose in the Church in opposing 
which it was necessary for the Church to formulate its 
own beliefs. It is divided into twelve clauses, arranged 
in three sections, each having to do with One of the 
Persons of the Trinity. 

/ believe in. Belief means an opinion upon which 
one is willing to act. It differs from knowledge in that 
one may have no actual first-hand experience of its 
truth or falsity. "Belief in," however, means in addi 
tion "trust in" and "surrender to in obedience/* 



THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 55 

God the Father. God Is the loving Father of all men 
with a personal Interest In everything concerning each 
of His children. He is not a benevolent papa, a kindly 
Santa Glaus, but One who loves them enough to will 
only what is best for them, and not just what they 
may happen to want. 

Almighty. Although God is omnipotent, He can act 
only in accordance with His nature which is loving, ra 
tional, and beautiful. Therefore to our great benefit 
God cannot do anything evil, absurd, contradictory, or 
ugly. 

Maker of heat/en and earth. God, the Uncreated, is 
the Creator of all else that exists. 

And in Jesus Christ. The beginning of the second 
section. Jesus was the personal name of our Lord. It 
is the Greek form of the Hebrew name Joshua and was 
considered in the first century AJX to mean "Yahweh 
saves/' although the original meaning of the name is a 
matter of dispute. Christ comes from a Greek word 
used to translate the Hebrew word Messiah, which 
means "Anointed One." Originally It referred to Jesus* 
office as God's special Representative upon earth, but 
soon it became used as a proper name as well. 

His only Son. God's only Son in a metaphysical 
sense as a Person of the Trinity. In a different sense all 
Christians are sons of God by adoption in baptism. 

Our Lord. Jesus is the Lord and Master of every 
Christian's life. In baptism we surrender ourselves to 
Him as slaves and are raised by Him to be His friends 
and companions on the way of life. 

Who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, Born of the 
Virgin Mary. The doctrine of the Incarnation and vir 
gin birth of our Lord, which means that when God 



56 THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 

determined in the fullness of time to become Man, He 
Himself started the process by which He did. 

Suffered under Pontius Pilate. The historical state 
ment of the Passion or suffering which our Lord en 
dured under Pontius Pilate, the Roman procurator of 
Judxa from 26-36. 

Was crucified y dead, and buried. He was put to death 
on a cross. 

He descended into hell. Hell is a bad translation 
here, as what is meant is not the place of torment, but 
the intermediate state. The Jews and early Christians 
believed that when a person died his body lay in the 
grave and his soul went to an intermediate state where 
it merely existed, and at the last day his soul and 
body were reunited, and he was raised up to stand 
before the judgment-seat, and there sentenced ac 
cording to his life on earth to an eternal existence of 
joy in heaven or of punishment in hell. It was thought 
that our Lord, during the period His body lay in the 
tomb, preached in the intermediate state to the spirits 
of those who had died before Him and offered them 
the opportunity of salvation. 

JJ3&Jhird,,day he rose again jrom the dead. In ac 
cordance with Jewish and Roman reckoning the day 
from which the reckoning is made is counted in as the 
first day. In what form our Lord rose from the dead 
cannot be known now with any certainty. Thejesr 

is that our Lord con- 
^ fact^that"He "Had overcome 



He ascended into heaven. From a modern point of 
view the truth underlying the clause is that our Lord's 
resurrection appearances ceased and that His ministry, 



THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 57 

instead of being a local Palestinian one, became uni 
versal. 

And sitteth on the light hand of God the Father 
Almighty. The language is metaphorical and was never 
at any time meant to be taken literally. It is a figura 
tive way of saying that our Lord occupies the place of 
honor in the Presence of God. 

From thence he shall come to judge the quic\ and 
the dead. This clause refers to the belief that our Lord 
was going to return in glory from heaven to judge the 
living and the dead at the last day. Modern Christians, 
although not expecting His second coming in the near 
future, do believe that He comes in judgment into each 
heart both in this and in the next world, and that He is 
both our Judge and our Standard of judgment. 

/ believe in the Holy Ghost. The beginning of the 
third section, having to do with the Holy Spirit and 
His work. It is quite irreverent to refer to the Holy 
Spirit as "It," for He is just as personal as the other 
two Persons of the Trinity. 

The holy Catholic Church. Not the Roman Catholic 
Church as some think. The word "catholic" comes 
from a Greek word meaning "universal." The clause 
means that one believes that our Lord founded a uni 
versal assembly of men to be set apart unto righteous 
ness to carry on His work in the world. 

The Communion of Saints. This means the fellow 
ship of Christians with one another through their pos 
session of the one Spirit and their fellowship with 
Christ. It applies not only to this world, but also to 
the next. All Christians are one in Him. 

The Forgiveness of sins. Without which belief we 
should be of all men most miserable, for if God always 



58 THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 

held our against us, no man could be saved. Be 
fore God, however, will forgive our sins, it is necessary 
for us to repent. Repentance involves five steps. At 
trition, regret that we sinned or were caught or were 
punished; Contrition, sorrow that we committed the 
sin itself with a hatred of it; Confession, acknowledg 
ment both to God and to men that we have sinned; 
Satisfaction, a repairing, insofar as it is possible, of 
the damage caused by our sin; Amendment, which in 
volves a change of mind and heart and will, so that 
what formerly was thought to be all right is now real 
ized to be wrong, and we begin to practice the opposite 
virtue. When this occurs, God at once forgives 
us. Forgiveness is quite a different thing from the re 
mission of the punishment for sin or the rectification 
of the consequences of sin, which, in this life, are 
Under the control of human wills and natural laws and 
may last long after one has been forgiven by God. 

The Resurrection of the body: And the Life everlast 
ing. Amen. It was formerly believed that at the last 
day man's soul, which had been sojourning in the in 
termediate state, would be reunited with his body which 
would be miraculously raised from the grave to con 
tain it. But to modern Christians these two clauses mean 
that man is immortal; that death is not the end but 
a new beginning; that in the next world there is a 
continuity of personality with this; and that men will 
possess spiritual bodies, by which their personalities 
will be recognizable as belonging to them. 

The Nicene Creed 

At the first general council of the Church called by 
the Roman Emperor Constantine in 325 at the city of 



THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 59 

Nicxa in Asia Minor, a creed was drawn up to assert 
the essential Deity of our Lord. At the second general 
council held in 381 at Contantinople it was further 
elaborated, and, later still, slight additions were made. 
This creed in the Episcopal Church is, as a general 
rule, recited in the Communion Service. 

/ believe in one God the Father Almighty, Mailer of 
heaven and earth, And of all things visible and in* 
visible. The invisible things refer historically to angelic 
spirits. 

And in one Lord Jesus Christ, the only-begotten Son 
of God; Begotten of his Father before all worlds, God 
of God f Light of Light, Very God of very God; Be 
gotten, not made. This creed is in the second section 
extremely metaphysical. It means that the Second Per 
son of the Trinity is not a created being, but One 
eternally begotten of the Father who is the Source 
of the Godhead. He is truly God of truly God and has 
always existed. He is the Light of the world, that is, 
the One through whom the world receives its knowl 
edge or illumination of divine truth. 

Being of one substance with the "Father. It was over 
this clause that the great Arian controversy raged. 
The Son shares in the same divine essence of Deity as 
does the Father. As the Father is God so also is the 
Son God, and yet there are not two Gods but one. 

By whom all things were made. The "whom" refers 
to the Son, who is the Agent of the Father in creation. 
The "by" is a bad translation and should be rendered 
"through." The Father was thought to have created 
through the intermediate agency of the Son, 

Who for us men and for our salvation came down 
from heaven, And was incarnate by the Holy Ghost 



60 THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 

of the Virgin Mary, And M/OS made man. Herein is con 
tained the great doctrine of the Incarnation, that is, 
of God's taking human flesh and becoming Man to 
save men from their sins and to raise them to the 
moral likeness of God, 

And u/as crucified also for us under Pontius Pilate; 
He suffered and was buried. The statement of Christ's 
Passion. 

And the third day he rose again according to the 
Scriptures. That is, as predicted in the Jewish Old 
Testament It, of course, was not written to predict 
the exact events of the life of Jesus Christ, although 
the early Christians believed that these were there 
foretold. They had difficulty in finding verses about 
the three-day resurrection. Hosea 6:2 is the one most 
often cited. 

And ascended into heaven, And sitteth on the right 
hand of the Father: And he shall come again, with 
glory, to judge both the quicJ^ and the dead; Whose 
kingdom shall have no end. The "whose" refers to 
Christ, whose Kingdom is everlasting. 

And I believe in the Holy Ghost, The Lord, and 
Giver of Ufe. The Holy Spirit is not only the Source 
or Giver of the spiritual life, but also its Lord and 
Ruler. He is the Guide of the Church, continually en 
riching and enlarging its comprehension of the divine 
Truth, and hence of the divine Life. 

Who proceedeth from the Father and the Son. The 
original creed did not have the words "and the Son." 
These were added later in the West. The Church in 
the East objected and withdrew from communion with 
the Western Church on this account. It is a metaphysi 
cal question about which ^he Church has no real 



THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 61 

knowledge. It is probably nearer the truth to say that 
the Spirit proceeds from the Father through the Son. 
However, both statements assert the same fact that 
the Spirit is divine in origin and is God. 

Who with the Father and the Son together is wor 
shipped and glorified. A statement that all three Per 
sons of the Trinity are alike in honor and equally to 
be worshipped. 

Who spa^e by the Prophets. Originally meaning the 
prophets of Judaism, it is now seen to mean that the 
Holy Spirit is the Inspirer of all the great prophets of 
.the human race whether Jewish, Christian, , or heathen. 
A prophet is one inspired to speak forth the" -will of ' 
God for his own generation, and does not mean here 
someone who predicts the future. ~Y^**' 

And I believe one Catholic and Apostolic Church. 
For some unknown reason the English translation 
omitted the word "holy" after "one," which is in the 
Greek original. Unity, sanctity, catholicity, and aposto- 
licity are the four notes or characteristics of the 
Church which our Lord founded. 

I acknowledge one Baptism for the remission of sins. 
There is only one Christian baptism, that with water 
in the Name of the Trinity, and whoever comes to bap 
tism repenting of his former sins receives thereby the 
seal of God's forgiveness of those sins. 

And 1 loo^ for the Resurrection of the dead: And 
the Life of the world to come. Amen. In modern 
thought one does not look for a resurrection* but an 
immediate passage into a spiritual world in which there 
is continuity of memory and of personality, and where 
one will live forever. 



62 THE CHURCH'S DOCTRINE 

These creeds, if written today, would be expressed 
in different language, for man's whole outlook on the 
world has changed. Hence it is necessary to go behind 
their language and forms of thought to the truth which 
they were attempting to express, and to translate that 
truth into modern conceptions of the universe. The 
Church is a living thing, and it is essential to be loyal 
not to its past, but to its present in which we live. 

BOOKS FOR FURTHER READING 

BAILLIE, D. M., God Was in Christ. Charles Schribner's Sons, 

New York. 
BAILLIE, J., And The Life Everlasting. Charles Scribner's Sons, 

New York. 
HODGSON, L., The Doctrine of the Atonement. Charles Scrib- 

ner's Sons, New York. 
LEWIS, C. S., The Case for Christianity. Macmillan Co., New 

York. 
OLDHAM, G. A., The Catechism Today. Seabury Press, New 

York. 
PIKE, J. A., and PITTENGER, W. N., The Faith of the Church. 

Seabury Press, New York. 
SELWYN, E. G., ed., Essays Catholic and Critical. Macmillan Co., 

New York. 
WHALE, J. S, 3 Christian Doctrine. Cambridge Univesrity Press, 

New York. 
WILSON, F. E., Faith and Practice. Morehouse-Barlow Co., 

New York. 
Doctrine in the Church of England. Seabury Press, New York. 



CHAPTER VII 

THE CHURCH'S MORAL LAW 

Church's moral law is summed up in the great 
JL saying of our Lord in which He combined two 
well-known verses from the Jewish Law Deuteronomy 
6:5 and Leviticus 19:18: "Thou shalt love the Lord 
thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and 
with all thy mind. This is the first and great command 
ment. And the second is like unto it. Thou shalt love 
thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments 
hang all the law and the prophets" (St. Matthew 
22:37-40). 

All Christian moral and religious teaching is but a 
commentary on these two fundamental principles that 
man is called upon to love God and to love his fellow 
men. One is called upon to love God first of all and 
to place Him first, but it is impossible to love God 
without loving one's fellow men at the same time. 

This means that the standard of moral judgment 
of the thoughts, words, and deeds of men is whether 
or not they are loving. No thought, word, or action 
which cannot fulfil that qualification is Christian. Our 
Lord left no detailed enactments for the government of 
human life, but simply these fundamental principles 
which He gave to men to apply for themselves to the 
particular problems which they meet in the daily life 
of their own generations. He imparted not so much a 

63 



64 THE CHURCH'S MORAL LAW 

set of laws for living, as a responsibility towards life. 
It has often been thought that the Ten Command 
ments are the rules of Christian conduct. As a matter 
of fact they are even below the level of the best Jewish 
moral teaching, for they represent the Jewish ethical 
standards of about the seventh century B.C. The Jews 
originally believed that they were given by God to 
Moses on Mount Sinai, but in reality they date from 
various periods, mostly later than the time of Moses. 
It is only by fulfilling them, that is, filling them full 
of Christian meaning, that they become valuable for 
Christian use today. Our Lord did this when He spoke 
of a person being angry at another, that is, wishing 
him harm, as breaking the sixth commandment; or a 
person planning in his mind to have intercourse with 
a woman not his wife, as breaking the seventh com 
mandment. A person who breaks any of the command 
ments (except the fourth) is certainly sinning griev 
ously, but one could keep all of them and yet be very 
far from being a Christian. They are not Christianly 
invalid, but Christianly insufficient. 

The Ten Commandments are found in slightly vari 
ant forms in two places in the Bible: Exodus 20:3-17 
and Deuteronomy 5:7-21. The version used in the 
Prayer Book is taken from Exodus according to the 
translation known as the Great Bible of 1540, instead 
of from the Authorized Version of 1611, which is the 
one usually read in Churches. 

THE TEN COMMANDMENTS 

L Thou shdt have none other gods but me. This 
was not originally a monotheistic statement, but a 
monolatrous, that is, there were other gods besides 



THE CHURCH'S MORAL LAW 65 

Yah well (the Name of Israel's God), but the Israelites 
were to worship and have to do with only Him. Christ 
ians today are to see that they have no other gods but 
God; that parents, friends, wealth, social position, 
pleasures, business, or worldly success do not come 
before Him. 

II. Thou shalt not maJ^e to thyself any graven 
image, nor the likeness of any thing that is in heaven 
above, or in the earth beneath? or in the water under 
the earth; thou shalt not bow down to them, nor wor 
ship them; for I the LORD thy God am a jealous God, 
and visit the sins of the fathers upon the children, 
unto the third and fourth generation of them that hate 
me; and show mercy unto thousands in them that love 
me and J^eep my commandments. This commandment 
forbids idolatry of all kinds: the making of images of 
the heavenly bodies, earthly creatures, or marine life, 
and treating them as gods; and the worshipping of 
images after they are made. Christians must likewise 
see that they do not idolize material things. 

III. Thou shdt not ta\e the Name of the LORD thy 
God in vain; for the LORD will not hold him guiltless, 
that taJ^eth his Name in vain. Originally forbidding the 
using of Yahweh's Name in an oath which was not 
kept, and warning that He would punish any who did 
so, to a Christian it forbids, Gist of all, blasphemy, 
which is the irreverent use of the Name of the Deity. 
Not only is blasphemy a sin itself, but far worse, it 
indicates a frame of mind which is indifferent, if not 
actually hostile to God, and which has little or no love 
for Him. A person does not use the names of those 
he loves, parents or friends, in indecent or frivolous 
ways, and neither do those who truly love God. Sec- 



65 THE CHURCH'S MORAL LAW 

ondly* it forbids cursing. Our Lord taught us to bless 
men when we are cursed, and to wish all men well. 
Cursing is not only evil for the words used, but even 
more for the thought behind the words. Thirdly, it for 
bids indecent conversation or lewd jokes of any sort. 
Fourthly, it forbids profanity. There are, however, cer 
tain expressions which are more unconventional than 
sinful. But a Christian seeks never to give offense, and 
so he will not use them as long as social convention is 
against them. 

IV. Remember that thou \eep holy the Sabbath- 
day. Six days s/ialt thou labour, and do all that thou 
hast to do; but the seventh day is the Sabbath of the 
LORD thy God. In it thou shalt do no manner of wor%; 
thou, and thy son, and thy daughter, thy man-servant, 
and thy maid-servant, thy cattle, and the stranger that 
is within thy gates. For in six days the LORD made 
heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and 
rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed 
the seventh day, and hallowed it. This commandment 
refers to Saturday and has nothing to do with the 
Christian Sunday or first day of the week. Every day 
is sacred to God. Anything which is right to do on 
Monday is also right, although not always advisable, 
to do on Sunday; and anything which is wrong to 
do on Sunday is wrong to do on any other day of the 
week. With God there is no demand for a blue Sabbath. 
However, Christians who do not find it convenient to 
attend the daily worship of God in those churches 
which have it, are expected to attend His worship on 
Sunday and to support the services of His Church. 
Furthermore, Christians who have a day of rest for 
themselves will seek to see that all their brethren have 



THE CHURCH'S MORAL LAW 67 

one as well. And also most Christians, although. God 
has never commanded it, will wish to show special 
reverence to the day of His resurrection by voluntarily 
refraining from certain activities which they do on 
other days. Even though dancing, card playing, parties, 
athletics, the theatre, amusements, and business are 
not sinful on Sunday, yet most Christians will refrain 
from participating in them on that day as a voluntary 
offering of respect on their part to God. 

V. Honour thy father and thy mother; that thy 
days may be long in the land u/hich the Lord thy God 
giveth thee. Respect for one's parents and elders was a 
cardinal requirement of Judaism. Courtesy is still today 
a fundamental Christian virtue, and it is nowhere more 
truly shown than to one's parents. Furthermore, be 
cause a ruler has from ancient times been regarded as 
the father of his people, obedience to lawful authority 
is also considered as enjoined by this commandment. 

VL Thou shalt do no murder. This commandment, 
as our Lord explained, forbids, from a Christian point 
of view, the wishing or doing of harm in any way to 
anyone. Not only does it forbid man to take another's 
physical life, but also to hinder or thwart anyone in 
the full enjoyment of the spiritual life which God in 
tends him to have. 

VIL Thou shalt not commit adultery. Adultery 
means to have sexual intercourse with a person mar 
ried to someone other than oneself. From a Christian 
point of view this commandment is much more ex 
tensive and forbids sexual impurity of any kind in 
thought, word, or deed. The mind has control of the 
body, and whoever keeps his mind pure will keep his 



68 THE CHURCH'S MORAL LAW 

body pure. In order to keep the mind pure It Is neces 
sary to lead a normal, healthy, self-controlled life, 
taking proper exercise and not overindulging in food 
or drink. It is also nesessary to avoid those things 
which incite the mind to lust: filthy conversation, in 
decent books, lewd pictures or plays, suggestive sur 
roundings. One cannot play with fire without getting 
burnt, and the prudent man, recognizing the strong 
desires of the flesh, avoids inflaming them. This does 
not mean that it is wrong to be curious about the sex 
ual facts of life or that one should not have full knowl 
edge of them; quite the contrary, they are facts which 
everyone should know. But it does mean that the 
Christian should treat sex as a sacred thing and con 
secrate his sexual instincts to the purpose for which 
God intended them, the complete union of man and 
wife into one, and the procreation of children to be 
raised up as children of God. 

VIIL Thou shdt not steal. This forbids the unlaw 
ful appropriation of that which is not one's own. It 
includes not only theft, but embezzlement, extortion, 
fraudulent appropriation of all kinds, borrowing and 
not returning, the wasting of other people's time, and 
the stealing of their good name and reputation. 

IX. Thou shdt not bear false witness against thy 
neighbour. From a Christian point of view this forbids 
dishonesty of all kinds. To be dishonest is not to say 
what is not so, a thing which all men have, through 
ignorance, been continually doing from the very be 
ginning, but to attempt to deceive for unworthy mo 
tives. It is deception for one's own advantage or for 
malicious purposes that is forbidden. 



THE CHURCH'S MORAL LAW 69 

X. Thou not covet thy neighbours home, thou 
not co^et thy neighbour's wijc, nor his servant* 
nor his maid, nor his ox, nor Ms ass, nor any thing 
is his. From an ethical point of view this Is the most 
advanced of all the commandments, as it has chiefly 
to do with an Interior state of mind. Coveting means 
to want something for yourself which would deprive 
someone else of it. It Is not wrong of itself to want 
an automobile just like that of Mr. X so that you 
both have one; but it is wrong to want Mr. X's auto 
mobile so that you will have It and lie will have none. 

As is easily seen, these Ten Commandments are 
chiefly negative; they deal with only a few sins, and 
those chiefly individualistic, and they have nothing to 
say about the positive duties of men, or of their collec 
tive obligations, or social sins. They are by all means 
to be observed, but, much more than that, the Christian 
Is to seek to live in communion with God, which means 
to become morally like unto Him, and that requires 
him to wish all men well. A Christian, furthermore, 
is humble; he forgets himself and remembers 
God. And at all times and in all places he is called 
upon to put God first, Ms fellow men second, and 
himself last. 

The Christian virtues are more properly found in 
such sayings as that of St. Paul (Galatlans 5:22,23): 
"The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsufler- 
ing, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temper 
ance"; or of our Lord, especially in the Sermon on the 
Mount. The so-called Beatitudes, contained therein (St. 
Matthew 5:3-10) are an excellent catalogue of Chris 
tian virtues, and testify to the spiritual joy which is 
the characteristic of those who lead a Christian life. 



70 THE CHURCHES MORAL LAW 

THE BEATITUDES 

Blessed are the poor in spirit: for theirs is the ^ing- 
dam of heat/en. Spiritually happy are the humble in 
mind: for in them does God reign. The first beatitude 
teaches the virtue of humility, one of the distinctive 
ethical characteristics of Christianity. It is only in the 
humble-minded that God can effect His will. 

Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be com 
forted. Spiritually happy are those who mourn because 
there is evil; for they shall be strengthened to bear it. 
Those sensitive to the evil and sorrow of life will be 
given power to triumph over it. 

Blessed are the mee\: for they shall inherit the 
earth. Spiritually happy are those who are free from 
self-will and resentment: for they shall receive the good 
things which God has prepared for them. The first 
beatitude has to do primarily with man's attitude to 
ward God; this one with his attitude toward men. 
A not unhappy interpretation of "meek" here would 
be "good-natured." 

Blessed are they which do hunger and thirst after 
righteousness: for they shall be filled. Spiritually happy 
are those who intensely desire to be righteous: for 
their wish shall be satisfied. It is only those who really 
desire to become good who do become good. 

Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy, 
Spiritually happy are those who are compassionate and 
forbearing towards those in their power without claim 
upon them: for they shall obtain like treatment from 
God. God forgives only those who themselves have a 
forgiving spirit 

Blessed are the pure in heart: for they shall see God. 



THE CHURCH'S MORAL LAW 71 

Spiritually happy are the single-minded: for so shall 
they know God. It is only as men have minds free from 
any defilement, corruption, or adulteration of evil that 
they are able completely to know God, to comprehend 
His will, to enter into full communion with Him. This 
beatitude is one of the most beautiful expressions of 
the goal of the Christian life. 

Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called 
the children of God. Spiritually happy are those who 
promote peace and prosperity among men: for in so 
doing they become like God. Peace, in Hebrew thought, 
not only denoted freedom from strife, but also included 
all the blessings of life. The peacemakers are those who 
promote the general welfare of mankind. 

Blessed are they which are persecuted for righteous 
ness* safye: for theirs is the \ingdom of heaven. Spirit 
ually happy are the righteous, even when persecuted: 
for in them does God reign. As long as one is in com 
munion with God, as is the case when one does His will, 
nothing which the world can do to one matters. The 
joy of Christian martyrs has always been a great mys 
tery to their tormentors, for they have no comprehen 
sion of what it means to live in God. 

A Christian is bidden not only to practice virtue 
and to conquer sin in his own life, but in that of the 
world as well, particularly as it is now manifested in 
the economic and international relationships of men. 
He is called upon to perform the difficult task of hating 
sin, but loving sinners. 

Sin has been variously defined. Theologically, it is 
disobedience to the will of God anything which sepa 
rates man from Him; morally, it is a failure to rise to 
the best that is in one a choosing of the lower of two 



72 



THE CHURCH S MORAL LAW 



alternatives. Sins arc traditionally divided into venial 
and mortal Venial sins are those which are readily 
pardonable; while mortal sins are those of a grave 
nature which bring spiritual death to the soul. One can 
sin by omitting to do good, just as much as by doing 
evil. 

Temptation, however, is not sin, no matter how fre 
quently it may recur. But if a person dwells with pleas 
ure on the temptation in his mind, or mentally per 
forms the act to which he is tempted, although he does 
not do so by word or deed, he has nevertheless sinned, 
and, in addition, done himself psychological harm. 

In order effectively to combat sin and to pursue vir 
tue, it is necessary to have a rule of life and to keep it. 
The rule should be simple, but definite. It should in 
clude such things as regular times for praying, Bible 
reading, attending church, and receiving die Holy Com 
munion. It should also have to do with one's daily 
habits, the spending of one's money, the use of one's 
leisure time, and Christian service activities in which 
one engages. But a rule of life is of itself not enough, 
for without the grace of perseverance little can be ac 
complished in this world. Consequently, a Christian 
must continually pray that God may grant him to per 
severe unto the end in the high calling to which he 
has been dedicated of service and friendship with Christ 
in His work in the world. 

BOOKS FOR FURTHER READING 
BAYNE, S. P., Jr., Christian Lit/ing. Seabury Press, New York. 



THE CHURCH'S MORAL LAW 73 

LIXDSAY, A, D., The Two Moralities. Eyre & Spottiswoodc, 

London. 

MORTIMER, R. C, The of Theology. MacmiHan 

Co., New York. 



CHAP TER VIII 

THE CHURCH'S PRAYER LIFE 

A CHRISTIAN is etymologlcally one who belongs 
JL\. to Christ one who has given his life to Him, to 
be used and to be made according as God wills. Con 
sequently, it is necessary to be in communication with 
God in order both to find out what God would have 
one do with one's life, and also to receive the divine 
power and strength without which the task could not 
be accomplished. And prayer is the means by which 
both of these are done. 

To the popular mind, prayer is a series of petitions 
recited to God attempting to bend His will to that of 
the person praying., and which God is honor-bound to 
fulfil if it is "in accordance with His will." But prayer 
is no such thing at all! Since God has conferred free 
will upon men it is no longer possible for Him to ac 
complish anything with or through them without their 
consent. No matter how insistently God may knock at 
the door of men's hearts, that door can only be opened 
from within by themselves. And prayer is the means by 
which man voluntarily makes contact with the wisdom 
and power of God and opens up the channels through 
which the divine grace may flow into his life. Prayer 
is, then, not an attempt to conform God to man's 
scheme of things, but the means of adjusting man's 
life to God's plan for Mm. 

74 



THE CHURCH S PRAYER LIFE 



75 



Now prayer is something independent of time, place, 
or bodily position, and the lives of the greatest saints 
have been "one long-continued prayer"; but with the 
ordinary man and woman it helps, at first, to have regu 
lar times of praying, and to find a quiet place where 
one can be alone and unobserved, and where one can 
assume a kneeling attitude. The large majority of 
Christians are accustomed to say their prayers at night 
before going to bed. By that they generally mean re 
citing the Lord's Prayer and some other prayers they 
have learned, along with a list of people to be blessed 
and protected. But, as can be seen, this is a very inade 
quate conception of prayer, and the ending of the day 
is not nearly so appropriate a time as the beginning. 

For the ordinary Christian who has not advanced 
far in the art of prayer some such scheme as the fol 
lowing should prove helpful. In the morning after 
being fully washed and dressed, let him kneel down 
quietly by himself and keep first of all a minute of 
silence or waiting, and then begin to make acts of recol 
lection. By that is meant to call to mind the kind of 
God to whom one is speaking. **O God of love, who 
dost love me with a greater love than I can either know 
or understand." "O heavenly Father, who dost will 
only that which is good for all Thy children," etc. 
This should be followed by an act of dedication of one's 
life to God for that day, a consecration of one's 
thoughts and words and deeds to His service. Then 
the events of the day as known should be gone over 
with God, the duties and the people with whom one 
will come into contact should be talked over with Him, 
and His guidance sought as to what is best to do, and 
the strength requested to follow His guidance. And 



76 THE CHURCHES PRAYER LIFE 

after this come intercessions, the peoples and causes 
which carries in one's heart and has on one's mind. 
Afterwards one's personal needs of spiritual develop 
ment should be brought before God and definite acts 
of righteousness along those lines determined upon 
for that day. And then should come the listening-time 
of prayer, the time when man is still and God speaks, 
the most important time of all prayer. And it is then 
that God will not only guide one in the events con 
fronting one that day, but will suggest ways in which 
the person praying can himself help the persons and 
causes for which he has interceded, and by which he 
can also attain the spiritual progress he has petitioned. 

Before each meal one should ask God's blessing on 
His gifts of food, and after each meal thank Him for 
those gifts. In the modern world this may often have 
to be done silently and unobtrusively, but there is no 
reason for its omission. Christians will also learn 
throughout the day to turn to God in short silent 
prayer or thanksgiving, as the occasion arises. Many 
pause at noon each day to recollect not only the morn 
ing past, but the afternoon and evening to come, and 
to pray for the spread of God's Kingdom in the world. 

The prayers at night also should begin with a si 
lence, and then acts of recollection. This should be fol 
lowed by a review of one's thoughts, words, and ac 
tions during the day in the light of God's Presence and 
a confession of one's sins and failings before Him. Hie 
confession should be definite and specific, and should 
avoid any attempt to excuse oneself. God Himself 
knows better than man does what allowances should 
be made. Next should come a recital of the things for 
which one has to be thankful throughout the day, and 



THE CHURCHES PRAYER LIFE 77 

an outpouring of the heart in gratitude to Goci for His 
many blessings. It should not be forgotten that grati 
tude to God should be just as great for the continuing 
blessings of life, such as shelter, food, clothing, health* 
parents, friends, as for any special or unusual attain 
ments, protection, or gifts of that one day. Afterwards 
should come intercessions and, as they increase in num 
ber, it is sometimes well to group them around various 
large topics, and to assign a particular day to each. 
These should naturally include not only those who pray 
for one, but also all for whom one ought to pray, as well 
as for all those who have no one to pray for them. 
Following this one's own needs should be made known, 
not to inform God, but to dedicate one's will to Him 
that He may aid one. Then, after ending with a com 
mendation of oneself and all men unto His love, and 
an ascription of praise to Him, one says Amen, so be it. 

Prayer^ when conceived in such terms, can become an 
occasion of joyous fellowship with One we love, and 
the means whereby our lives grow like unto His and 
we meet the problems of life in His strength and look 
out upon the world through His all-loving eyes. Per 
severance in prayer is the measure of our real desire 
for that for which we pray. 

What has been said, of course, applies equally to 
public prayer; only there the expressions must be more 
general and more formal in order to cover the needs 
and desires of all sorts and conditions of men. Public 
prayer is a corporate expression of the Church's de 
pendence upon God, a dedication of the lives of its 
members both individually and collectively to His serv 
ice, and an opening up of the corporate mind and life 
of the Christian community, that it may be filled with 



78 THE CHURCH'S PRAYER LIFE 

His wisdom and supplied with His strength; as well as 
a knitting of men together in brotherhood in the fel 
lowship of the one Spirit. 

THE LORD'S PRAYER 

In answer to a request of His disciples our Lord 
gave them a model prayer which soon became known 
as the Lord's Prayer, and has been in constant use eer 
since. In its original Aramaic form it probably ran 
something like this: "Father, hallowed be Thy Name, 
Thy Kingdom come. Give us our bread day by day. 
And forgive us our sins, as we also forgive everyone 
who sins against us. And let us not yield to temptation." 
It was translated into Greek and expanded and altered 
slightly in usage, and a doxology appended to it. In its 
present form it is divided into four parts: the address; 
petitions concerning God; petitions concerning man; 
and the doxology. 

The Lord's Prayer is found in the Bible in two va 
riant forms: St. Matthew 6:9-13 and St. Luke 11:2-4. 
The version used in the Prayer Book is a very early 
one, dating from before the sixteenth-century English 
translations of the Bible. The American Prayer Book 
has slightly modernized the phraseology. 

Our Father. In these two words are contained two 
of the great doctrines of Christianity: the Fatherhood 
of God and the Brotherhood of Man. The Lord's 
Prayer is addressed to a God whom our Lord taught us 
is a loving Father. One must not, however, think of 
God as solely masculine. Certainly there is embraced 
as well within the Godhead all of those great qualities 
which we associate with the term motherhood (cf. 
Isaiah 66:13). The prayer is an unselfish one through- 



THE CHURCH'S PRAYER LIFE 79 

out; it asks that all men may share in that which is 
petitioned. 

Who art in heat/en. Heaven is not a locality but a 
state of life die state of life in which God dwells, the 
quality of life which emanates from and surrounds 
His Presence. Although we stand in the intimate re 
lationship to God of child to parent, yet He is at the 
same time above and beyond us. This phrase lifts our 
thoughts from the temporal to the eternal, from the 
material to the spiritual. 

Hallowed be thy Name. Thy 'kingdom come. Thy 
mil be done, On earth as it is in heat/en. These three 
clauses go together, and the phrase "on earth as it is 
in heaven*' goes with each of them. When God's will 
is done, then is His Kingdom or rule come in that in 
dividual, and His Name held holy. "Name" in Hebrew 
usage is a metonym for God. "Hallowed" means to 
treat as holy or sacred. "Kingdom" really means here 
"kingship/* or "rule/' or "reign." So the clauses taken 
together are a petition that God's will may be done and 
so His rule established and He Himself properly wor 
shipped by faithful service. It should be noted that the 
first concern of the Lord's Prayer is with God, His 
worship, rule, and purposes. He comes before all else. 

Give us this day our daily bread. The exact meaning 
of the Greek word translated "daily" is not certain, 
but it probably means "next." The clause is a petition 
that each day we may be given the food for our next 
meal. It is a request for the necessities of life as they 
are actually needed, not for a superfluity or for luxu 
ries. It asks God that all men may be supplied alike 
with these necessities, and a Christian who truly prays 
this prayer will do his part to see that they are. He 



80 THE CHURCH'S PRAYER LIFE 

will not desire more for himself than others, nor more 
than is actually necessary for his needs, realizing that 
a man's needs are a quite different thing from his de 
sires. Furthermore, this petition acknowledges our de 
pendence upon God who is the Giver of all good gifts- 
It marks the beginning of the third section of the 
prayer. 

And forgive us our trespasses, As we jorgwe those 
who trespass against us. A more literal translation of 
the Greek, which is found in the Authorized Version 
of the Bible, runs: "And forgive us our debts, as we 
forgive our debtors." Both of these mean: "And forgive 
us our sins as we forgive those who sin against us." 
In the first case sin is looked upon as a trespass into 
forbidden territory; in the second, which is a common 
Jewish view, man is looked upon as owing God per 
fect obedience, and every time he disobeys Him he is 
in debt to God for that obedience which he did not pay. 
The petition is a plea for mercy, but at the same time 
it is recognized that God cannot forgive man until man 
forgives his fellow men, for God only forgives man 
when he repents, and as long as he is nourishing ill in 
his heart toward someone else, he is not repentant. Man 
is neither required nor expected to forgive his fellow 
men until they do repent. What is required is the will 
ingness to forgive others upon their repentance, an 
absence of all thought of revenge, and an attitude of 
loving goodwill towards all men at all times. 

And lead us not into temptation. This clause has puz 
zled interpreters from the earliest times, because it is 
only through meeting and overcoming temptation that 
man is able to become good, the Christian character 
built up, and righteousness attained. Many think that 



THE CHURCH'S PRAYER LIFE 81 

the Greek is a mistranslation of the original Aramaic 
spoken by our Lord and the clause should read: 
"And let us not yield to temptation." A few, less prob 
ably, consider it a petition to be delivered from the 
fiery trial and woes which at that time were expected 
to precede the end of the world. While others, who ac 
cept the words as they stand* take them closely with 
the following words and paraphrase in some such way 
as this: "Knowing we are weak, lead us not into temp 
tation, lest we fall; but if we do meet with temptation^ 
strengthen us so that we are delivered from falling 
into evil." 

But deliver us from evil. Or perhaps from the evil 
one or devil. Christians at that time believed in evil as 
well as good spirits. Modern Christians do not believe 
in a personal devil, but they do just as earnestly pray 
that all men may be delivered from both moral and 
physical evil. The two clauses together form a petition 
for spiritual strength. This is the original ending of the 
Lord's Prayer, and at this point it ends in the Roman 
Church, and in our own Prayer Book when used on 
penitential and sorrowful occasions. 

For thine is the fyingdom, and the power, and the 
glory, for ever and ever. Amen. This is a doxology^ or 
ascription of praise to the Deity, added to the prayer 
by the early Church, just as still today such a doxology 
is added at the end when the Psalms or canticles are 
said. Here it is man's acknowledgment that God's rule, 
power, and praise are eternal. "Amen" is a Hebrew 
word meaning "so be it/' It is the congregation's sol 
emn asseveration that they earnestly pray that the 
prayers may be granted which not only they themselves 
say, but which also the minister says for them. One 



82 THE CHURCH'S PRAYER LIFE 

should always audibly say a Amen" at the end of every 
prayer, for the worship of the Episcopal Church is con 
gregational, and this marks the participation of the 
congregation in those prayers said for them by the 
person representing them, called the parson. 

The Lord's Prayer was given to men as a model, 
not as a magical formula, and due to its great fa 
miliarity and frequent use, it is necessary for men to 
say it slowly, thoughtfully, and reverently in order to 
make its petitions one's own desires. It is well in saying 
it privately to pause after each clause and to consider 
its significance for the specific problems of one's own 
life and that of the world around one. By so doing one 
more fully enters into the mind of the Lord, and grows 
into closer communion with the God whom He taught 
men to call their Father. 

BOOKS FOR FURTHER READING 

FOSDICK, H. E., The Meaning of Prayer. Association Press, New 
York. 

HERMAN, E,, Creative Prayer. Harper & Row, New York. 

PARBDE, A., Prayer Worlds. Morehouse-Barlow Co., New York. 

UNDERHILL, K, Concerning the Inner Life. E. P. Button & Co., 
New York. 

WILSON, F. E., An Outline of Personal Prayer. Morehouse- 
Barlow Co., New York. 

Forward day-by-day. Forward Movement Publications, Cin 
cinnati. 

Prayers for AH Occasions. Forward Movement Publications, 
Cincinnati. 

Prayers New and Old. Forward Movement Publications, Cin 
cinnati. 



CHAPTER IX 

THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 

A SACRAMENT is an outward and visible sign 
jLJL of an inward and spiritual grace.' 5 So runs lie 
first part of the old catechetical definition, A sacra 
ment is something outside of one which can be seen, 
symbolizing an action going on inside one's mind. Sac 
raments are unlimited in number, but the Church after 
many centuries chose seven, which, when the proper 
conditions are present on the part of the recipient, be 
come the outward means of producing spiritual benefit. 
The seven are Holy Baptism, Holy Penance, Holy Con 
firmation, Holy Communion, Holy Matrimony, Holy 
Unction, and Holy Orders. Of these seven only Baptism 
and the Holy Communion are officially recognized by 
the Episcopal Church as Sacraments ordained by Christ 
as generally necessary to salvation, although the Prayer 
Book provides forms for all the others of a traditionally 
sacramental character, without using die term "sacra 
ment" for them. Many also reckon preaching among 
the great sacraments of the Church, others place Bible 
reading and hymn singing in the same category. 

Now a sacrament consists of two parts: the outward 
sign and the inward grace, and the outward sign is in 
turn divided into two parts, the form and the matter. 
Some of the sacraments may be received only once, 

83 



84 THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 

others may be administered to a more 

frequently. The various sacraments, likewise, have dif 
ferent requirements as to which order of the ministry 
may perform them, 

BAPTISM 

Baptism is the first of the sacraments which a person 
receives; and until one is baptized, that is, a member 
of the Church^ he may not receive any of the others. 
Baptism can only be administered once, and may be 
administered in cases of extreme emergency by any 
Christian, although it is usually administered by one 
in priest's orders. The outward sign of baptism is, 
as to matter, water and, as to form, the words, "N., I 
baptize thee in the Name of the Father, and of the 
Son, and of the Holy Ghost." It makes no difference 
how the water is applied, whether by immersion or by 
affusion (pouring on the head) as isJiow ordinarily 
done. The inward grace is a cleansing from all sins 
committed previously. Water was chosen as the symbol 
as being the commonest of all cleansing materials. 
Christ is believed to have instituted baptism and its 
Biblical authority is found in St. Matthew 28:19. The 
sacraments, however, are not magical, and they never 
operate without the necessary spiritual conditions, oftea 
called a state of grace, being fulfilled upon the part of 
the recipient. By a state of grace is meant a state of 
receptivity of spiritual influence, the necessary con 
ditions of which are faith and repentance. This comes 
out in the questions asked of the sponsors or of the 
adult person himself before the baptism. Enquiry is 
made as to his faith in the question whether he believes 
all the articles of the Christian faith as contained in the 



THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 85 

Apostles* Creed; and as to his repentance in the ques 
tions whether he renounces evil In all Its forms and 
purposes to follow good In accordance with God's will. 
Children of a tender age, who are the persons now 
most ordinarily baptized, naturally seldom have any 
sins of their own as yet of which to repent, but by 
their admission into the body of persons seeking to 
overcome sin and to fulfil righteousness they receive 
forgiveness for whatever share they may have as mem 
bers of the human race in the corporate and inherited 
sin of the race. The promises are made for them, as 
minors, by sureties or sponsors, who by their influence 
and training are expected to see that the child is 
brought up so as to fulfil these promises. Hence these 
sponsors are called godparents, that is, spiritual rela 
tives. But baptism is a symbol not only of the forgive 
ness of sins, but also of admission into the Church. 
One Is thereby made a member of Christ and an heir 
to the joyous, spiritual life promised by Christ to those 
who truly follow Him. It is also the time when one 
receives one's Christian name or names as another 
sign of one's new membership in Christ's Church, and 
is signed upon the forehead with the sign of the cross 
in token that thereafter, like Christ, one should be 
humble and should triumph over suffering, and so over 
come the world. 

PENANCE 

Penance is the sacrament symbolizing the forgive 
ness of sins committed after baptism. It may be 
administered by anyone in priest's orders as often 
as there is need. Its Biblical warrant Is found in 
St John 20:22,23. The outward sign consists of the 



86 THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 

form "I absolve thee in the Name of the Father, and 
of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost Amen." Absolution 
not effect the forgiveness of sins; it is an outward 
sign to the penitent heart of God's forgiveness, which 
is dependent solely on man's repentance. Confession 
is made privately to God in the presence of His priest, 
for both God and man are outraged by sin. It is made in 
the presence of a priest to deepen man's humility, to 
judge the sincerity of his repentance, and to give counsel 
which will be helpful in overcoming sin in the future. 
The absolution pronounced by the priest after the 
general confessions in Morning and Evening Prayer 
and the Holy Communion is a general absolution in a 
precatory form and applicable, as all absolutions, only 
to those who are sincerely penitent and faithfully be 
lieve God's holy promises of forgiveness. 

CONFIRMATION 

Confirmation is the sacrament of the impartation of 
spiritual strength to lead the Christian life. It is gen 
erally administered at that time of life when one ceases 
to be a child spiritually and becomes a man spiritually. 
It is the ordination of the laity by the laying-on-of- 
hands to their own sacred ministry of full service and 
responsibility in God's Church. Confirmation can only 
be administered once and, in the Anglican Communion, 
only by a bishop as the successor of the apostles. Its 
Biblical warrant is found in Acts 8:14-17, which is 
read as the lesson at Confirmation. The outward sign 
consists, as to matter, of the laying on of the bishop's 
hands upon the head of the person confirmed, and, as 
to form, the prayer for the sevenfold gift of the Holy 



THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 87 

Spirit. Confirmation Is not to 

a person overnight, nor is it what makes an 

Episcopalian, but it is the outward assurance of God's 
gift of His own spiritual and influence to van 

quish all evil to carry out His will. This spiritual 
influence may be neglected, and in time it will grow 
weak, or it may be cultivated and thereby increased; 
but Confirmation is the outward symbol to men that 
their bodies are the temples of the Holy Ghost and that 
He is capable, if they will but follow, of leading them 
into all truth and righteousness and peace. 

HOLY COMMUNION 

The Holy Communion is the sacrament in which the 
soul of man is nourished with spiritual food; through it 
he receives the sustenance of his spiritual life. The 
Holy Communion may be celebrated by anyone in 
priest* s orders as often as the occasion may arise, al 
though custom limits this, except in cases of necessity* 
to once a day between the hours of midnight and 
ecclesiastical noon, one o'clock. The outward sign, as 
to matter, is bread and wine, the commonest forms of 
food and drink in the Orient of Christ's time; and, as to 
form, the words with which our Lord Himself insti 
tuted the sacrament: "This is My Body," "This is My 
Blood." Accounts of the institution of the Holy Com 
munion are found in St. Matthew 26:26-28; St. Mark 
14:22-24; St. Luke 22:19,20; I Corinthians 11:23-26. 
A person not in priest's orders should make his Com 
munion only once within the period from midnight to 
midnight, although he may attend as many celebra 
tions as he wishes. 

There are many aspects of the Holy Communion, 



88 THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 

some of which are Indicated by the various names it 
has been called in the course of time. The common 
Anglican name suggests the fact that it is In and 
through this sacrament that man enters into that com 
munion and fellowship with God wherein he makes his 
purposes one with His and surrenders his will to Him, 
and labors together with Him in joyous companion 
ship for the establishment of His rule in the world. It 
also symbolizes the communion of Christians with one 
another through their communion with the LordL 

The name "Holy Sacrifice" brings to mind the great 
central fact that tils sacrament is a commemoration 
and memorial of Christ's sacrifice upon the cross, of 
Love giving Himself in self-sacrifice for those whom 
He loved. It is a reminder that insofar as man through 
love sacrifices himself for others, therein does he share 
in the divine life. 

The name "Holy Eucharist/* which is a Greek word 
for thanksgiving, emphasizes the fact that this sacra 
ment is one way of publicly expressing our gratitude 
to God for the innumerable benefits which have come 
to us from the life and death of Christ. In thankful 
ness to Him for them the Christian in this sacrament 
seeks the power to make his life more nearly like His. 

The name "The Lord's Supper" brings out the fact 
that it Is through this means that the Lord nourishes 
our souls, by our offering of them to God for His serv 
ice, and receiving them back freshened and strength 
ened through contact with His Presence. 

Devout Christians truly believe in the Real Presence 
of our Lord in the Sacrament which He instituted, but 
that He is only perceived by faith. Various theologians 
have attempted to define more closely the exact manner 



THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 89 

of His Presence, many it to the consecrated 

Bread Wine. The is not how our 

Lord is in the Sacrament, bet the 

Sacrament His Presence real in the life of 

the person receiving it. 

One should come to the Holy Communion as often 
as one has need, but it will be found if one*s 

perception of one's need is not increasing, one's spirit 
ual life is dwindling not growing. Persons recently 
confirmed would do well, as a general rule, to come 
once a month their first year thereafter, and to 

increase the number of times gradually until they 
make their Communion at least once a week. 

Each time that one comes to the Holy Communion 
one should come with a definite intention, around 
which one's prayers and aspirations should center. 
Man has too large a task to accomplish to dissipate 
his spiritual desires and energies on a vague wish 
to be better or a confused petition for strength or help; 
what he needs is guidance and support for the imme 
diate task. Consequently, one may come to the Holy 
Communion with a desire to be more loving and less 
jealous, and with a particular person or persons in 
mind towards whom, with God's help, one is going to 
make a definite act of goodwill. Or one may come 
with the intention of thanking God for some particu 
lar blessing or blessings to himself or others; or with 
a particular intercession in mind for those in this life, 
the next, or for some cause or organization in which 
one is interested; at the same time freely offering 
oneself as an instrument for the accomplishment of the 
petition. In this way, by definitely centering the mind 
on a particular object and entering into fellowship with 



90 THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 

God with this in mind, spiritual energy is concentrated 
on a particular task with an effectiveness which is never 
present when one comes vaguely to the Sacrament 
without such intention or preparation. 

It is, furthermore, expected that every person before 
receiving the Sacrament shall have carefully examined 
his life in the light of the divine life and repented fully 
of all that is not in conformity therewith; and, as he 
says the General Confession, have his own particular 
sins in mind. Custom forbids receiving the Sacrament 
if one is not in church in time to say the Confession, 

The necessary conditions of receiving the Holy Com 
munion are set forth in the invitation in the Prayer 
Book: "Ye who do truly and earnestly repent you of 
your sins, and are in love and charity with your neigh 
bours, and intend to lead a new life, following the com 
mandments of God, and walking from henceforth in 
His holy ways; Draw near with faith, and take this 
holy Sacrament to your comfort; and make your 
humble confession to Almighty God, devoutly kneel 
ing." They are the same two requirements as for the 
reception of the other sacraments: faith and repentance. 
The positive side of repentance is here fully brought out 
in the requirement that one must wish all men well and 
that each Communion should be a new dedication to 
God and His will, the renewal of one's spiritual life. 

HOLY MATRIMONY 

One does not need to come to the Church to be mar 
ried, and those who do should not only be members 
of the Church, but have every intention of living their 
married life in accordance with God's will. The out 
ward sign of matrimony is a contract between a man 



THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 91 

and a woman to live together as and wife, of 

which the giving and receiving of a ring and the joining 
of hands is the symbol The inner meaning is the union 
of the two lives into one. Genesis 2:24 and St. Mark 
10:7-9 are generally cited as the Biblical references to 
the institution of this sacrament. Hie law specifies who 
may perform marriages, but only one in priest's orders 
may bless a marriage, and that is really all that the 
Church does. After vows duly given and the contract 
made, the Church prays that the two lives may become 
spiritually one, that each may live for the other, and 
that they two together may work as one for the accom 
plishment of God's purposes in the world. Conse 
quently, the Church should not be asked, and should 
refuse to bless any marriage in which, it does not find 
such an intention present, 

UNCTION 

Unction is the sacrament whereby the sick are 
anointed with oil for spiritual and bodily healing. It 
may be administered as often as need requires, but 
only by one in priest's orders. The warrant for it is 
found in St. James 5:14. Its outward sign, as to mat 
ter, is oil, and, as to form, "I anoint thee with oil, 
in the Name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the 
Holy Ghost. Amen." 

Oil was chosen as the symbol because it has from 
ancient times been a healing remedy. The sacrament 
proclaims God's power to heal both the body and the 
soul, but there is nothing magical about it. When it is 
administered to sensible people who are penitent and 
full of faith, it can be of help in predisposing their 



92 THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 

minds to health and hope, and in centering their trust 
on God. 

HOLY ORDERS 

Holy Orders is the sacrament wherein the authority 
to act as ministers in Christ's Church is conferred, and 
the spiritual strength necessary to fulfil the task is 
imparted. It can only be conferred once for each of 
the three orders of bishops, priests, and deacons, for it 
conveys a character indclcbilis which can never be 
taken away, although one may be deposed, that is, 
deprived of the right to exercise the office. Biblical ref 
erences to ordination are found in St. Matthew 28:18- 
20; St. John 20:21-23; Acts 6:5,6, 13:2,3; I Timothy 
3:1-10; Titus 1:5-9. Ordination in the Anglican, Greek, 
and Roman communions can only be administered by 
a bishop, although priests assist in the laying on of 
hands at ordination to the priesthood. The outward 
sign, as to matter, is the laying on of the bishop's hands 
upon the head of the person to be ordained, and the 
form is a formula for each order specifying the office 
and its purpose. The inner grace is God's sustaining 
strength and guidance for those who have been given 
authority to minister in His Name. The ministry is a 
sacrament in that it is a channel through which God's 
revelation and strength and forgiveness and blessing 
are brought to His children. 

A deacon may read Morning and Evening Prayer, 
the Litany, Ante-Communion, and the Burial Service; 
preach (when licensed thereto by the bishop) ; baptize 
(in the absence of a priest); and assist in the ad 
ministration of the Holy Communion. A priest may, 
in addition, absolve penitent persons from sins; bless 



THE CHURCH'S SACRAMENTS 93 

in the Name of the Lord; and consecrate the bread and 
the wine in the Holy Communion to be the Body and 
Blood of Christ. These three powers are sometimes re 
ferred to as the priestly ABC. In addition to these, a 
bishop has power to confirm people with the Holy 
Spirit; and to ordain men to the ministry. 

Through these seven sacraments, as through many 
other channels, the life of God is constantly being in 
fused into the life of man ? vitalizing it into a new life., 
the life eternal. 



BOOKS FOR FURTHER READING 

HIGGINS, J. S., This Means of Grace, Morehouse-Barlow Co., 

New York. 
PASDUE, AUSTIN, The Eucharist and You. Morehouse-Barlow, 

New York. 

WILSON, F. E., An Outline of the Christian Sacraments* 
Morehousc-Barlow Co., New York. 



CHAPTER X 

THE CHURCH'S REQUIREMENTS 

r T"" ! HE Church is not the ministry nor do the church 
JL buildings belong to the ministers. The Church is 
the whole body of those who have been made members 
of Christ through baptism, and each member is re 
sponsible for its welfare and shares in Its privileges. 

The first and great obligation of every Churchman 
is to support the Church to support it by his prayers; 
by his regular attendance at its services of worship; by 
his participation in its activities; by his commenda 
tion of it to others; and by giving to it in accordance 
with his means. 

A Christian every day should remember in his pray 
ers not only the Church at large with all its work, 
but his own particular parish with all its needs; its 
clergy, and its other members; and should each night 
seriously lay to heart if he is doing his own part in Its 
support; and pray to be a better member. 

The question should never arise on Sunday as to 
whether one should go to church or not, that should be 
taken for granted. For members of the Episcopal 
Church are still bound by Canon 19, which reads: "All 
persons within this Church shall celebrate and keep the 
Lord's Day, commonly called Sunday, by regular par* 
ticipation in the public worship of the Church, by hear 
ing the Word of God read and taught, and by other acts 

94 



THE CHURCH'S REQUIREMENTS 95 

of devotion and works of charity, using all and 

sober conversation." The question may arise occasion 
ally as to whether one should stay away on account of 
illness or some other grave cause, but never on account 
of the visit of friends or relations. If they will not go to 
church ? one's first duty is to God and not to them. One 
should also see how many of the week-day services one 
is able to attend, and support them as well. No matter 
how dull the sermon, or how mechanically or badly 
read the service, one can always speak to God and let 
Him, speak to one's heart; and furthermore, there is 
always the lesson of patience to be learned, until one 
takes loving steps to correct what is at fault. 

Every man, woman, and child, insofar as he is 
able, should be a member of, and whole-heartedly 
support the church societies and activities for which 
he is fitted, in order that the friendly life of service 
of the parish may be increased. Never wait to be asked 
to join a church organization. Make your desire to 
serve known to the rector, and let him place you where 
you are most needed. 

Nowhere does there seem to be more gossip and 
backbiting and criticism, sometimes, than in church 
work. And this is a positive hindrance to the further 
ance of its purpose of loving service. A Churchman 
should not only himself refrain from such kind of talk, 
but do all in his power to commend his own parish 
and church to all men. A good rule might well be: 
De ecclesia nihil nisi bonum. "To say nothing of the 
Church except that which is good." 

It is amazing how few who call themselves Chris 
tians actively support the Church financially. They 
think that an occasional quarter or dollar bill placed 



96 THE CHURCH'S REQUIREMENTS 

in the plate when they happen to be present discharges 
their financial obligation. Or else they feel that the 
Church is only to be supported out of their surplus, and 
when their financial situation changes for the worse, it 
is perfectly proper to economize by ceasing to give to 
the Church altogether. Others think that because one 
member of the family contributes It is not necessary 
for the other members to do so. Even where the money 
eventually all comes from one member of the family, 
each of the others should be given an allowance for 
this purpose, if for no other, in order that he may defi 
nitely feel himself a contributor; and this applies to 
boys and girls who have been confirmed just as much 
as to older people. In very few, if any, cases would it be 
Impossible for those who really wanted to do so to 
give a penny a week to the support of the Church, and 
they could contribute their time and services in other 
ways which would save the Church money and thus 
be an actual financial contribution as well. The Church 
does not expect a person to give any definite amount of 
his income, such as a tithe or tenth, but to regard all 
his wealth as held in trust for God and to apportion his 
income for the good of others, Including the Church, as 
God may direct. 

A Churchman should also take an intelligent interest 
in his parochial affairs and attend the annual Parish 
Meeting. He should keep himself posted on what the 
Church Is doing. He will find the most helpful way of 
accomplishing this is to subscribe to the monthly 
magazine issued under the auspices of General Con 
vention, the Episcopalian; or his diocesan bulletin; or 
one of the national Church papers, The Living Church 
or The Witness. 



THE CHURCH'S REQUIREMENTS 97 

A Churchman also read Ms Bible regularly 

and be intelligently acquainted with the history, doc 
trine, customs of his Church. Religious education 
is not meant to be confined to the period of attendance 
in the Church school, but should be co-extensive with 
a person's life from the cradle to the grave. He should 
seek to interest others in the Church and should invite 
them to come to church with him. And he should so 
conduct himself at all times that people may know that 
he is a Christian, and that God and His Church may 
be praised because of him. 

A Churchman moving from one parish to another 
should request a letter of transfer from his former 
parish to his new one. Only in this way can the records 
and statistics of the Church be kept anywhere nearly 
accurate. It also helps to establish his standing in the 
new parish at once. All that is needed to do is to write 
the former rector requesting a letter of transfer and 
stating the name of the new parish. Some people hesi 
tate to do this for sentimental reasons; others to escape 
financial responsibility in the new parish; but every 
Churchman who places the well-being of the Church 
first will do so at once. 

Parents are charged with the responsibility of bring 
ing their children up as members of God's family, 
which means, first of all, making them such in baptism. 
From the parents' point of view baptism is a dedication 
on their part of their child to God, to grow up in His 
love, and to go forth to do His work in the world. Sec 
ondly, they are responsible for creating a family life in 
accordance with God's will, a home where a child will 



98 THE CHURCH'S REQUIREMENTS 

feel the Presence and influence of God. Thirdly, they 
are charged with seeing that their children are instruct 
ed in the Christian religion and have ample oppor 
tunity for participating in its worship and work at home 
and school and church. Parents can only effectively dis 
charge these obligations by example, rather than pre 
cept; that is, by living the Christian life themselves. 

Godparents should be baptized and confirmed mem 
bers of the Episcopal Church, with an affection not 
only for the parents and child, but also for God and His 
Church. They should be people to whose lives a child 
could look for inspiration and guidance as to how to 
live more like Christ; and, consequently, they should 
be people with whom the child may reasonably be ex 
pected to come frequently in contact. It is their duty, 
as well as that of the parents, to see that the child 
is instructed in the Christian religion; learns the Creed, 
the Lord's Prayer, and the Ten Commandments; and is 
actively striving to fulfil the promises they made in his 
name, by keeping himself from evil, and growing in 
love for God and men, and in all that is beautiful, true, 
and good. 

As a member of the Church a person is entitled free 
to its spiritual ministrations of all kinds; and by this 
is meant the use of the church building and the services 
of the clergy. Those, however, who want special music 
or decorations for a service must necessarily pay the 
cost involved. The clergy consider it a privilege to be 
able to minister in any way to those who are in trouble 
or in sorrow, to those weighed down with sin or care, 
to the sick and to the dying. In a large parish, and often 
even in a small one, it is impossible for die clergy always 
to know when they are needed, and they look to the 



THE CHURCH'S REQUIREMENTS 99 

persons themselves and to their friends to inform them 
when they can be of service. Clergymen are in duty 
bound to baptize a dying person at any time when called 
upon, and likewise to hear a confession of sin when a 
person's conscience is greatly troubled. They will gladly 
arrange to have a private celebration of the Holy Com 
munion at home or at a hospital for anyone who is 
ill or prevented by infirmity from attending church, 
and they expect as a matter of course to bring their 
Christmas and Easter Communions to those unable 
to be in church. It is a Churchman's privilege to con 
sult his pastor at any time in regard to spiritual and 
moral questions; although here, as always, people will 
realize that due to the manifold demands on a modern 
minister's time it is well to make an appointment in ad 
vance in order that the convenience of both may best 
be suited. 

In regard to marriages and burials the clergy should 
always be consulted, rather than the sexton or under 
taker, as to the day and time of the service. A clergy 
man is now required by canon law, except in an emer 
gency where one of the parties is known to him, to 
have at least three days* notice before he can perform 
a marriage service. In the case of burials where the 
sexton of the church is also an undertaker, people will 
find it as a general rule both more convenient and more 
economical to make use of his services rather than those 
of some outsider. 

If there is anything about the Church or its ways or 
teaching that a person does not understand, he should 
consult his pastor, who will be sympathetic with his 
ignorance and proud of his interest and only too glad 
to help in any way that he can. Good pastors refuse to 



100 THE CHURCH'S REQUIREMENTS 

parishioners by assuming that they will do 
anything less than their full duty as members of 
Christ's Church. 



FOR FURTHER READING 

The Episcopalian. Published by The Episcopalian, Inc., 1930 

Chestnut St. 9 Philadelphia 3, Pa. 
The Uvlng Church. Published weekly by the Church Literature 

Foundation, 407 East Michigan Street, Milwaukee 2, Wis. 
The Witness. Published weekly by the Witness Publishing Co. 3 

Tunkhannock, Pa. 



APPENDICES 



APPENDIX A 

PREPARATION FOR CONFIRMATION 

'"INHERE is no "correct" age for Confirmation. The 
JL proper time varies with each Individual. A child 
should have reached years of discretion, that Is, spir 
itual maturity. He should be stable and dependable, 
with a comprehension of the fundamental difference 
between what is right and what is wrong, and an ear 
nest desire to follow the right. In addition, he should 
have some background and acquaintance with the 
Church and its teaching. Normally this occurs with 
most children about the age of puberty. But It is al 
ways possible to confirm children who have been 
brought up in religious homes where the parents regu 
larly attend and support the Church earlier than those 
from homes where they would have to stand alone in 
maintaining their religious ideals. It must also be re 
membered that the age when the parents or other 
children in the family were confirmed has little to do 
with the case of the particular child being considered. 
Adults should be confirmed whenever they are suf 
ficiently acquainted with the ways and teachings of 
the Episcopal Church to be convinced that they wish 
to make it their permanent spiritual home; and, in 
addition, feel a sense of rededication to God and a 
consequent desire for the strengthening aid of His Holy 
Spirit. 

103 



104 PREPARATION FOR CONFIRMATION 

There are two preparations to be made before being 
confirmed: one of the heart and the other of the mind; 
although the preparation is really not so much for 
Confirmation, as for the whole period of one's life 
afterwards. Furthermore, it is not a question of being 
prepared for Confirmation, but rather of preparing 
oneself. The preparation of the mind is secured through 
the attendance at a Confirmation class, or through 
private interviews with a clergyman, and by the read 
ing of Confirmation manuals and other books about 
the Churd? and its ways and teaching. In order to be 
an intelligent, helpful, loyal Churchman, one must 
have some knowledge of these things, a distinct un 
derstanding of what is expected of one as a member 3 
and a feeling of familiarity with the doctrine and wor 
ship which puts one at ease during the service and 
allows one's thoughts to center upon God. 

The preparation of the heart is harder and must be 
made largely alone, although a clergyman is always 
glad to help with what counsel he can. As soon as one 
knows when the bishop is coming for Confirmation, 
and has decided after careful thought and consulta 
tion with one's rector and family to be confirmed at 
that time, one should make an act of surrender tc 
God. It should be in intention an act of complete sur 
render of one's whole Hfe, although in practice suet 
an act of complete surrender comes rather at the end 
than at the beginning of the adult Christian life. One 
does not have to feel good or righteous or holy to be 
confirmed. If one does, it is probably due to pride and 
the person is not ready for Confirmation. What one 
must feel is the desire to be better each day, and the 



PREPARATION FOR CONFIRMATION 105 

determination to one's life increasingly that 

of Christ. 

Secondly, one determine one's Confirma 

tion preparation shall take precedence over everything 
else,, and accordingly set apart the time for 

the Confirmation classes and for one's outside study 
and Bible reading. If one has not already established 
the habit of saying one's prayers daily in the 

morning and in the evening, one should to do so. 

The next step is to make a thorough examination of 
one's past and present life, and one's hopes and aspira 
tions for the future, and to see how nearly they con 
form to the standards of Christ. Having done so, one 
should confess one's sins to God, make proper satis 
faction for them insofar as that is possible, and then 
actively take measures to grow in the opposite virtues. 
An aid to such self-examination will be found in Ap 
pendix B. 

Fourthly, one should remember in one's prayers 
morning and night the Church, the bishop who is to 
confirm, the minister preparing one for Confirmation, 
the other members of the Confirmation class, and 
one's own particular needs, including a petition that 
one may uphold one's full responsibility as a member 
of the Church. 

The night before Confirmation one should again ex 
amine one's life and confess one's sins to God; review 
the solemn promises of renunciation, faith, and obedi 
ence which one is to assume for oneself; and, determin 
ing to live in communion with God, open one's heart to 
Him with complete trust that it may be filled with His 
Holy Spirit, and that thus, day by day, one may grow 
more like Christ. 



106 PREPARATION FOR CONFIRMATION 

Many people are worried by the question of tow 
they should be dressed for Confirmation. There are two 
simple rules: First of all, be neatly and soberly 
dressed; and secondly, insofar as it is financially 
possible, follow the parish custom. In many parishes it 
is customary for the women and girls to be dressed 
entirely in white and to wear white veils, and for the 
boys and men to wear blue suits, stiff collars, and black 
shoes and socks; in others for both the men and women 
merely to be quietly dressed, and for the women to re 
move their hats before coming forward to be presented 
to the bishop. 

It is generally customary for the class to meet be 
fore the service and to sit together in a body in the 
front pews in the church. Before the Confirmation 
Service itself there is ordinarily some preliminary serv 
ice, consisting generally of shortened Morning or Eve 
ning Prayer. Then a hymn is sung during which the 
Confirmation class comes forward to the altar rail and 
stands in line in front of it. Then the rector (with the 
other ministers, if so arranged) presents the class to the 
bishop, who sits in his chair in the sanctuary on the 
Gospel side. After this some minister usually reads 
the account of the first-known Confirmation Service, 
taken from the Acts of the Apostles. Then the bishop 
asks the members of the class if they ratify their bap 
tismal vows. And by answering "I do" both before 
God and men they take the responsibility of their 
spiritual welfare from the hands of their godparents 
and assume it themselves, thereby becoming spirit 
ually adult. The baptismal vows were three: to re 
nounce what is evil; to believe what is true; and to 
obey what is right 



PREPARATION FOR CONFIRMATION 107 

To renounce what is evil does not mean that one 
promises never to sin, but that one definitely pledges 
oneself, with the help of God, not to indiilge in evil, 
worldliness, or fleshly sins; that one decs not believe 
that they are right or helpful; and that one definitely 
does not wish to be aligned with the forces of evil in 
the world. 

To believe what is true is most important, for un 
less a person believes in the Christian religion there 
is no point in his being a Christian. For baptismal and 
Confirmation purposes the Christian belief is summed. 
up in the Apostles' Creed. 

The third vow is a pledge, with the help of God, to 
keep His commandments and to observe them, not just 
at the time of Confirmation, but all the days of one's 
life. As has been seen, love is the fulfilling of God's 
commandments. 

The promise to observe these three things is the most 
solemn promise of one's whole life, and should only 
be taken after much prayer and the serious considera 
tion of aU that is involved in so doing. Next the bishop 
asks the class whether they promise to follow Jesus 
Christ as their Lord and Saviour; that is, to make 
Him the Model of their lives, and to carry on His 
work in the world. And the class again answers to 
gether in a voice that can be heard: "I do." 

Then follow some versicles and responses, in which 
the class joins with the rest of the congregation in 
making the responses. After which, while all continue 
to remain standing, the bishop prays, as did the origi 
nal apostles, before laying on his hands upon those to 
be confirmed. This prayer mentions the fact that in 
baptism their sins have been forgiven and they are 



108 PREPARATION FOR CONFIRMATION 

born to a new life in God; and it prays God to 

strengthen diem in this life with the Holy Spirit, the 
Comforter, or, in modern English, Strengthened and 
daily (not all of a sudden) increase in them His many 
free gifts of spiritual influence (grace). These are 
summed up in the ancient sevenfold gift of the Spirit, 
as found in the Greek version of Isaiah 11:2: Wisdom, 
understanding, counsel, spiritual strength, knowledge, 
godliness, and reverence. 

Then those of the Confirmation class standing next 
to the rail either all kneel, or else in some dioceses 
go individually into the sanctuary and kneel before the 
bishop sitting in his chair. The bishop lays on his hands 
upon each candidate individually and prays that he, 
defended by God's influence, may always be His child, 
and daily through the power of the Holy Spirit grow 
like Him until the goal God has set for him is attained. 

When all have been confirmed the bishop bids them 
to prayer. The class and congregation kneel and re 
peat with him the Lord's Prayer. He then says two 
prayers asking for their continual sanctification, and 
ends with the blessing. The members of the class now 
rise and, if the bishop does not make a special address 
to them at this point, return to their seats during the 
singing of a hymn. 

Generally there follow a sermon, offertory, final 
prayers, and benediction. As soon as the service is 
over, it is usually customary for the members of the 
class to come to the vestry to meet the bishop and to 
receive their Confirmation certificates before greeting 
their families and friends. 

In many parishes a special preparation service is hdd 
for the class before it receives its first Communion, 



PREPARATION FOR CONFIRMATION 109 

which It customarily does In a body at some early cele 
bration. In so doing the members of the class enter Into 
the full fellowship of Christ's Church. 

BOOKS FOR FURTHER READING 

ATWATER, G. P., The Episcopal Church: Us Message for Men 

of Today. Morefaouse-Barlow Co., New York. 
Diocese o New York, Ready and Desirous. Morehouse-Barfow 

Co., New York, 
HATJGHWOUT, L. M. A., The Ways and Teachings of the 

Church. Morehouse-Barlow Co., New York. 
LUCE, H. K,, A Modem Confirmation Manual* A. & C. Black, 

Ltd., London. 
McDowELL, LOWELL, Soldiers and Servants, a confirmation 

workbook. Morehouse-Barlow Co., New York. 
PELL, W., and DAWLEY, P. M. s The Religion of the Prayer 

Boo%_. Morehouse-Barlow Co., New York. 
WALSH, C,, Knoc^ and Enter, Morehouse-Barlow Co., New 

York. 



APPENDIX B 

AN AID TO SELF-EXAMINATION 

Have I loved God with all my 

heart? 

soul? 

mind? 

Have I prayed to Him morning and nigtit ? 
Have I supported His Church and His worship with 

my presence? 

my participation in its activities? 

my money? 

Have I been reverent at all times? 
Have I sought to know His will ? 

and to do it? 

Have I sought to make God known unto others? 
Have I loved my neighbor as myself? 
Have I unselfishly placed his welfare above my own? 
Have I always wished and done all men well? 
Have I worked and prayed for a more equitable social 

order? 

Have I, in the meantime, done my part to support 
the charities and social agencies seeking to alleviate 
present suffering? 

Have I prayed and worked for international peace? 
Have I done my part to live at peace with all men? 

no 



AN AID TO SELF-EXAMINATION 111 

Have I been chaste and pure in 

mind? 

speech ? 

body? 
Have I been humble and modest in 

bearing? 

speech ? 

dress? 
Have I been honest in all my dealings with 

men? 

companies? 

governments? 
Have I been merciful and kind in 

thought? 

word? 

deed? 
Have I held myself in self-control? 

particularly in regard to my tongue? 
Have I been courageous and brave? 
Have I been patient under affliction? 
Have I been joyous and the bringer of cheer to heavy- 
laden hearts? 
Have I been loyal to all to whom my loyalty is due? 



APPENDIX C 

PRAYERS 

In Preparation for Confirmation 

OGOD, who through the teaching of Thy Son 
Jesus Christ didst prepare the disciples for the 
coming of the Comforter; Make ready, I beseech Thee, 
the hearts and minds of us who, at this time, are seek 
ing to be strengthened by the gift of the Holy Spirit 
through the laying on of hands; that, drawing near 
with penitent and faithful hearts, we may evermore be 
filled with the power of His divine indwelling; through 
the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

O LORD GOD, Giver of heavenly increase, who by the 
might of Thy Spirit dost confirm the first efforts of 
my soul; Encourage in me every good intent, and carry 
me from strength to strength. Cleanse my conscience, 
and stir my will gladly to serve Thee, the living God. 
Leave no room in me for spiritual wickedness, no 
lurking-place for secret sins; but so establish and 
sanctify me by the power of Thy holy Word, that, 
evermore taking heed unto the thing which is right, 
and speaking and doing the truth, I may find godliness 
my gain, both in the life which now is, and in that 
which is to come; through Jesus Christ my Lord. 
Amen. 

312 



PRAYERS 113 

LORD GOD of hosts, my Captain and my King; Ac 
cept, I pray Thee, us that are about to offer Thee the 
service o our lives. Make our wEls strong* our cour 
age steadfast, and our faith firm; that, having been 
signed in baptism with the cross, and now of our own 
will enlisting in that service, we may not be ashamed 
to confess the faith of Christ crucified, but manfully 
fight under His banner against sin, the world, and the 
devil, and continue Christ's faithful soldiers and serv 
ants unto our life's end. Amen. 

O Low> GOD, who hast sent Thy Holy Spirit into 
the world to strengthen me and to lead me into all 
truth; I pray Thee that I, believing in Thy promises 
and trusting in Thy love, may be so prepared by Thee 
to receive the grace of Confirmation, that I may come 
with a faithful and penitent heart unto that holy mys 
tery, and may obtain the fullness of those gifts which 
Thou dost promise, so that I may have strength to 
resist all sin, and grace to persevere unto the end; 
through Jesus Christ my Lord. Amen. 

STRENGTHEN, O Lord, I pray Thee, by Thy Holy 
Spirit, those who are now preparing to seek Thy help 
in Confirmation; and grant that all we who wear the 
Cross upon our foreheads, may bear it also in our 
hearts; so that, boldly confessing Thee before men, 
we may be found worthy to be numbered among Thy 
saints; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

In Preparation for the Holy Communion 

O LORI>, my Master, prepare me to receive Thyself 
in the Holy Communion; thai come in all Thy might. 
Let Thy strength make me strong, Thy purity make 



114 P R A Y E E S 

me pure, Thy gentleness make me kind; that, as Thy 
fellow worker, I may help to make this world a better 
place according to Thy will; who art God for ever and 
ever. Amen. 

GRANT me, O Lord, the help of Thy grace, that at 
this holy Sacrament I may bring all my thoughts and 
desires into subjection to Thy blessed will, and may 
offer my soul and body a living sacrifice unto Thee, 
in union with the perfect sacrifice of Thy Son, my 
Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen. 

O ALMIGHTY Goo, whose blessed Son did institute 
and ordain holy mysteries as pledges of His love, and 
for a continual remembrance of His death; Mercifully 
grant that I, and all who shall come to Thy Holy 
Table, may be filled with a deep sense of the exceed 
ing holiness of that blessed mystery; and that, drawing 
near with true, penitent hearts and lively faith, in love 
and charity with all men, we may worthily receive that 
holy Sacrament, and obtain the fullness of Thy grace, 
to our present comfort and our everlasting salvation; 
through the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

O GOD, who dost govern the thoughts of men; Bring 
to my mind the upper room where the Lord Jesus 
broke bread with His disciples the night before He 
was crucified. Grant that, being of that company, I 
may look into the face of Him who gave Himself for 
the world. While I eat of His bread and drink of His 
cup, fill my life with His life; and send me forth to 
think His thoughts, to say His words, to do His deeds. 
And so, O blessed Father, grant that the light of His 



PRAYERS 



115 



face may shine in my face, that all men may take note 
that I have been with. Jesus; who liveth and reigneth 
with Thee and the Holy Spirit, the God of everlasting 
love. Amen. 

On Entering Church 

OUR HEAVENLY Father, strengthen the work of this 
Church for good to Thy children, and guide and sup- 
port those who herein minister in Thy service; open the 
hearts of those who worship here to receive Thy loving 
wisdom and to do Thy will; and help me reverently 
and attentively to worship Thee, and day by day to 
grow more like unto Thy Son, Jesus Christ our Lord. 
Amen. 

On Leaving Church 

O LORD, I thank Thee for this time of worship, and 
pray that It may bring me and all my brethren here 
Into closer fellowship with Thee, that so we may go 
forth strengthened to serve Thee more faithfully aU 
our days; through Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen. 

Graces 

O LORD* bless this food to our nourishment, and 
strengthen us for Thy service; through Jesus Christ 
our Saviour. Amen. 

O LORD, we pray Thee to bless this food. Give us 
grateful hearts, and make us mindful of the wants of 
others; for Christ's sake we ask it. Amen. 

FOR THESE and all His mercies, God's holy Name be 
praised; through Christ our Lord. Amen. 



APPENDIX D 

A PARTIAL LIST OF CHRISTIAN RELIGIOUS 
CLASSICS 

The Apostolic Fathers. 

The Confessions of St. Augustine. 

The Little Flowers of St. Francis of Assisi. 

The Divine Comedy, by Dante Alighieri. 

The Imitation of Christ, by Thomas a Kempis. 

The Revelations of Mother Juliana of Norwich. 

Theologia Germanica. 

The Spiritual Exercises of St. Ignatius Loyola. 

Spiritual Letters of St. Francis de Sales. 

Private Prayers of Lancelot Andrewes. 

Paradise Lost, by John Milton. 

Holy Living and Holy Dying, by Jeremy Taylor. 

The Pilgrim's Progress, by John Bunyan. 

The Practice of the Presence of God, by Brother Law 
rence. 

A Serious Call to a Devout and Holy Life, by William 
Law. 

The Christian If ear, by John Keble. 



116 



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